Each summer, students from the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics gain valuable professional-level exposure through internships. This year, young scholars were able to traverse the complications of COVID-19 by pursuing an array of internships, externships and other professional development opportunities. Each profile of this series will detail a Lerner student’s experiences working remotely on business-oriented projects.
Nathan Benyowitz, a Class of 2021 sport management major, spent his summer taking enriching courses and interning with TopNotch Management, a boutique sports agency in Newport Beach, California.
Q: What are you doing this summer to develop your readiness for your future career?
Benyowitz: This past summer, I took two classes while I was doing my internship. This helped me improve my time management skills. On top of that, I also did training with the Varsity Tennis Team at UD, of which I am a member. During my spare time, I connected with UD Alumni within the sports industry to hear about their journey on how they got to where they are today.
Q: How did the coronavirus response impact your summer plans?
Benyowitz: At first, I thought that there would be a negative impact on my plans. I had an internship lined up at TopNotch Management, a boutique sports agency. I stayed in contact with them throughout the pandemic and then, in late May, an opportunity opened up. They were running an exhibition tennis event in four different cities, and one of them was Newport Beach, CA. Fortunately for me, I live in Los Angeles, so I was able to assist them in the event. After the six weeks were up, we ended up extending the event in two of our locations and I helped them on the player negotiation side of the event.
Q: What did you learn through this experience that you don’t think you would have learned anywhere else?
Benyowitz: This experience was second to none. From helping run an event to player negotiations to assigning on promotions and sponsorships, I wouldn’t have gotten this anywhere else. Being remote and not around a team has taught me independence. I had to learn to create opportunities for myself and come up with new ideas for the company. The team was great to work with, they assigned me a lot of different projects but, most of all, they instilled their trust in me to create new ideas and opportunities for them. It was truly a rewarding internship experience.
Q: What is an example of a time you were able to apply something you learned at Lerner to your efforts?
Benyowitz: At the end of the event, I was challenged to create a revenue and expenses spreadsheet. If I never took ACCT 207 I would not have had any idea what they were asking me to do. I feel very fortunate that our sport management program is a part of our business school since it gives me access to having a business background. Many different schools have a sport management program but to be in the industry while having a business background gives you a leg up on everyone.
Q: What have you been doing this summer outside of professional development, just for you?
Benyowitz: Outside of professional development, I really focused on my own personal growth. Being back home in Los Angeles for the longest period of time since my senior year of high school, I knew that challenges had the potential to arise. Fortunately, LA is not a bad place to quarantine, so I made sure that I was going on walks every day and getting on the tennis court as much as I could. This time also allowed for valuable family time. My siblings were all home together for the first time in a while, so it was really nice to have that time with my family.