NC State Sport Management Student is Super Bowl-Bound
As thousands of people descend on Las Vegas this week for Super Bowl LVIII, NC State student London Thomas will be working behind the scenes to ensure that America’s biggest sporting event is memorable for football fans.
Thomas, a senior majoring in sport management at the College of Natural Resources, has been hired as a student production assistant by On Location, an experiential hospitality business specializing in the world of sports and entertainment.
On Location, which was founded by the NFL in 2015 and remains the league’s official hospitality partner, offers a number of ticket packages that offers Super Bowl fans everything from access to official team parties to meet-and-greets with players.
Thomas will be on-site at Super Bowl LVIII from February 7-13. In her role, she will be part of a team that greets and directs guests, sets up pre- and post-game events, places signage and florals, takes photos, oversees vendor installations, and other responsibilities.
“It’s a once of a lifetime opportunity. The excitement, energy, and fast-paced environment align with my passion for hospitality and sports,” Thomas said. “I see it as a chance for professional growth and valuable experiences.”
She added, “Working at the Super Bowl will allow me to engage with experts from diverse backgrounds and learn from their perspectives. I thrive in environments where different viewpoints are present as it fosters a dynamic and enriching learning experience.”
NC State’s Sport Management degree program is ranked among the best of its kind in the country. Its interdisciplinary curriculum helps students to learn the business of sport, from creating sponsorship proposals to risk management plans.
The program relies heavily on experiential learning, with the curriculum requiring students to successfully complete at least one internship before graduation. These experiences often lead students to secure additional internship experiences and even full-time employment opportunities.
Thomas, for example, recently completed an 11-week internship at Grandover Resort and Spa — which is ranked as one of North Carolina’s best golf hotels by U.S. News and World Report. While there, Thomas learned about the opportunity to work at Super Bowl LVIII through a colleague.
Thomas said her experiences at NC State and beyond, including her internship at the Grandover Resort and Spa and her position at Super Bowl LVIII, will help boost her prospects as she seeks employment upon graduation in May 2024.
“Drawing on my previous experience in the hospitality and tourism industry, I aim to carve a path that not only allows me to contribute my skills in creating memorable experiences but also allows me to immerse myself in the dynamic world of sports,” Thomas said.
She added, “I see these experiences as pivotal steps toward achieving my long-term goal of making a meaningful impact in both industries, leveraging my skills to enhance the overall event experience and create lasting memories for attendees or all parties involved.”
Thomas said her success at NC State so far wouldn’t have been possible without the guidance of numerous faculty members from the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management, including Kimberly Bush, Keith Howard and Jonathan Casper.
“It is easy to get overwhelmed with life, classes, and the future, but these professors have helped me stay on track and make sure we take time for ourselves so we can excel in all aspects of our lives,” Thomas said.