While Ohio Wesleyan Kristie Prendergast ’15 is best known in athletics as a captain of the Battling Bishop women’s soccer team, she spent her summer immersed in the world of Major League Lacrosse.
Prendergast worked in sponsorship and marketing for the Ohio Machine, which plays its home games at OWU’s Selby Stadium. During her internship, she made a significant impression on Noah Sharfman, the Machine’s director of public relations and operations.
“Kristie was amazing when she interned with us this past summer,” he says. “She has set the bar pretty high for that position.”
The internship left a strong mark on Prendergast, too; she plans to study law back home in Cleveland and then work in a sports team’s legal department.
“I think it was a good experience,” she says. “It was also a realization that it’s not all glamorous like everyone thinks. There are long work days, but it’s worth it when those fans have a good experience.”
During home games, Prendergast’s work day could last up to 17 hours. The small team atmosphere, though, made it worthwhile, she says.
“There are three salespeople, three or four VPs, so it’s a really close-knit family,” she says. “There were 10 or 11 interns, so being with them – it really made 17-hour work days unpaid go by a lot better. … [E]veryone was super inclusive, and you felt important.”
Prendergast’s internship focused on writing scripts for game announcers, ensuring they recognized Ohio Machine sponsors, as well as overseeing music for halftimes, timeouts, and other breaks in the game.
She and the other interns also would help set up sponsor signs around the stadium and distribute free pocket schedules in the community to help raise the team’s visibility.
Prendergast says she learned about the internship from an online database – Teamwork Online – but the close proximity of the Machine’s front office in Columbus helped when it came to an interview.
Prendergast lived with a friend and soccer alumna part of the summer; most of the other interns were from the Columbus area.
“They went to Ohio State, OU (Ohio University), so it was just fun to meet everyone,” she says. “And you’re spending all day together; it just made the internship a lot more memorable, having the close friends.”