Representatives from various sports and entertainment organizations gathered in the SMSU Theater to share their experience and insight with CSUSB students.
The Anaheim Angels, Cinema Culturas, Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG)/L.A. Kings, Live Nation, L.A. Dodgers and the L.A. Rams were all represented on the panel on May 21.
They discussed their positions in the companies, the most exciting aspects of their jobs, gave resume and cover letter “do’s and don’ts,” and shared what they look for in potential candidates. After a moderated discussion between panelists, students were given the chance to ask them questions, expand their network and submit their resumes.
This event gave students an inside look at how unique and compelling a career in sports and entertainment can really be.
“Sports are exciting. Sports build passion,” said representative of the Anaheim Angels, David Neumann. “When people talk about sports teams, you feel the undying passion that you don’t get in any other industry.”
A.E.G. and L.A. Kings representative, Jack McFarland, shared the unusual experience he had as a new graduate from Cal Lutheran. On his way to an interview, he got into a car accident. He showed up to the interview six hours late, exhausted, and a little bloody. Despite these obstacles, he still scored the job.
He now works as head of sales.
“I’m only three years removed from most of you, so the future is very bright,” said McFarland.
Shawn Matiossian was one half of the team representing Live Nation, and is a graduate of CSUSB. He now works as the manager of talent acquisition for his company.
When entering the workforce as a recent graduate, Matiossian says he had an unrealistic expectation when applying for jobs, often asking for a $100,000 salary at an entry level positions.
“The main thing I look for is what I call the ‘three P’s’, passion, perseverance, and patience,” said Matiossian.
He also stressed the importance of gaining any sort of job experience and getting involved on campus.
The panelists discussed each of their professional preferences when it comes to job applications. While their answers varied, it was made very clear that students and new graduates need to make resumes and cover letters a priority when applying to jobs.
Some panelists, such as Angel’s representative Neumann, love cover letters. Neumann says he appreciates cover letters as they allow applicants to express themselves.
“A cover letter is where you get to tell your story,” said Neumann. “And I am a sucker for a good story.”
Others such as Kimberly Chapman from Live Nation, express interest in LinkedIn pages.
“LinkedIn is kind of the new cover letter,” said Chapman.
Jessica Bro of the L.A. Rams, and CSUSB alumni, recommends making sure that resumes are up to date and reflect what you say in your interview.
The head of inside sales for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Patrick Simon, asked the audience what they hope to gain when sending out resumes. In general, students responded they want to their resume and cover letters to help them land a job.
Simon explained that resumes and cover letters will never get you the job. They can get you the interview. This is where your personality or “ganas” can shine through and help you land the position.
“Ganas is the desire to be courageous and means you’re more likely to get the job done,” said Cinema Culturas representative, Cony Martinez. Martinez introduced her three new interns during the event. They are all students here at CSUSB.
Hour two opened the floor up to the audience members for questions, some of which were specific to company representatives.
Students inquired about leadership abilities, how to stand out from other applicants, and what may be holding them back from advancing during the interview process.
McFarland stressed the importance of having creativity when applying. Some examples he recommended are mailing in a resume, sending thank you notes, or even showing up at a company’s general office to make inquiries.
One candidate he said, sent him socks after an interview with a note that said, “don’t get cold feet, let’s make this deal.” That candidate received the job.
Each panelist empathized with students, as they all expressed how they were once undergraduates searching for success.
“Don’t be scared, take risks. It’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission,” said Shawn Matiossian.