By Emily Scott – During the fall semester, William Jewell student Chris Stathopoulos ‘14 had the opportunity to work with Sporting Kansas City as a Ticket Sales Intern. Stathopoulos, a junior, is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Entrepreneurial Leadership. Hoping to pursue a career in the front office of a professional sports franchise after graduation, Chris has had four internship experiences in the industry, working for the Cleveland Indians, Kansas City Chiefs, and Cleveland Browns before his current internship. In addition, the Chiefs hired him to return for the 2012 NFL season in a paid, game-day capacity as a Suite Services Coordinator because of the exceptional work he did while interning during the spring of 2012.
Chris is currently the only intern at Sporting Kansas City. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, he works at Sporting’s downtown Kansas City office while keeping up with his fall semester classes the rest of the week. He assists the Senior Account Executive with ticket sales for clients, as well as makes sure that the clients he serves get VIP treatment in the process. Chris has worked outside of the ticket sales department during his internship as well, coordinating and executing many special events that Sporting Kansas City has hosted.
One such event he planned was for high school students involved with DECA, an organization for marketing education. According to Chris, “The event was a joint effort of Missouri and Kansas DECA to encourage students to come out to LIVESTRONG Sporting Park, listen to speakers from Sporting’s front office, work on creating a marketing plan for a potential Sporting Kansas City Kid’s Club, and take a tour of the stadium.” The students were all given a ticket to the match that evening and had a lot of fun. The opportunities he has had outside of ticket sales allowed him to have numerous interactions between with operations and business sides of Sporting Kansas City.
Stathopoulos says the internship has also taught him that, “Ticket sales is not about just selling tickets. It is also about selling ownership in the team’ s success. It’s about turning a seat into a personal piece of real estate. It’s about providing an absolutely phenomenal fan experience for your clients. My boss at Sporting lives out this mission and has been a great person to learn from.” Chris has enjoyed his experience with Sporting Kansas City this semester. With every internship he completes, Chris is one step closer to living out his dream of a professional career in sports.