U SPORTS sits down with each of its interns this semester in our new interview series “Getting to know…”
- Name: Zack Bedder
- School: Durham College
- Program: Sport Management
- Internship position: Marketing and Sponsorship
- Hometown: Ajax, Ont.
1. What attracted you to Durham College and your program?
Durham College is close to home and happened to have one of the most successful Sport Management program in Canada. I have always had a passion for sport and being able to learn in such a great program close to home seemed like a no-brainer.
2. Why were you interested in interning at U SPORTS?
U SPORTS has had a great track record with interns, giving them tons of hands-on experience and allowing their interns the tools to succeed in their future. Also, U SPORTS had an internship available in both marketing and sponsorship, two areas that interest me and would give me experience for the future.
3. What are your key learnings from your experience at U SPORTS?
Time management. Having to juggle meetings, deadlines and personal projects all at once is tough and U SPORTS helped me see how important of a tool this is. Another key learning, I had is attention to detail. Everything needs to be cohesive, from placements of text in every slide to what kind of coffee is available in the kitchen.
4. Any memorable moments over the course of your internship?
Having the opportunity to have first-hand experience at a national championship was amazing. This gave me an idea of what a ton of hard work can look like and the benefits of it all paying off. Another great moment was when I was able to come up with an idea for a twitter header that ended up being used for U SPORTS. It was great to know that I managed to contribute even as an intern.
5. What is one piece of advice you can give to someone interested in joining U SPORTS?
Work hard and it will pay off, getting as much hands-on experience as possible and take any opportunity that crosses your path.
6. Why did you choose to pursue a career in sports and what is your dream job?
From a young age, sport has always been a constant in my life. The smell of dirt and the sound of the ice cream truck are things I will never forget, growing up at my parents’ baseball games from as young as I can remember. With a handful of years after high school with no idea what to do with my life, I realized that I still loved sports. This pushed me to attending college and pursue a career in sport. Like any kid, I always wanted to be a professional athlete, but with this dream coming to a crushing defeat and having school at my back I would love to work in marketing. Dream job: Marketing Manager for Rugby Canada or Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE).
7. If you could sit down with one person in the sports industry (athlete, coach, manager or professional), who would it be? Why? What would you talk about?
I would have to pick two people. First would be Richard Peddie. I read his book Dream Job in my fall semester this past year and thought it was great. His industry knowledge and ability to completely change an organization from basically the ground up is astonishing. He is one of those guys with all the tips and tricks you would want to apply to your own future in the sport industry. Second would be Brian O’Driscoll, one of the great rugby players ever, and I try and model my personal game with his. I would love to pick his brain about rugby and how to constantly improve as a player and person.
8. After joining U SPORTS and gaining a better understanding of what we do, how would you describe the organization and the culture at the national office?
Fast-paced, welcoming, polite, precise execution, detail-oriented.
9. What do you enjoy doing when you’re away from your internship and school?
On my personal time, I play rugby in the highest men’s division offered in Ontario. I volunteer coach rugby for my old high school, play video games, hang out with my girlfriend and my dog.
10. What is your most memorable sports moment?
Personally, would be this past year when I was a part of history at Durham College. Helping lead the Durham Lords rugby team to an Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) Championship in our first season back since the 90s and marking the very first rugby championship at Durham College.
For watching a sport, it would be the Blue Jays playoff run in 2015 - Game 5 vs. Texas.
The objective of the U SPORTS Internship program is to provide students currently enrolled in collegiate / university programs with concrete experience of what it is like to work in the Canadian sport industry.
To apply, click here.