When deciding on a major, CBA junior Samantha Peterson from Omaha, Nebraska wanted to utilize her athletic experience and her outgoing personality. Marketing became her obvious choice and an internship with the Lincoln Stars, a minor hockey league located in Lincoln, Nebraska, provided the opportunity to further develop her skills learned in class.
“Choosing to major in marketing gave me a way to continue to be part of the athletic community and help market a business. I had been on or around sports teams for as long as I can remember,” Peterson said.
Rob Simon, associate professor of practice in marketing said, “Samantha came to class curious and wanting to learn about different opportunities in sales and marketing. She has a passion for learning and understanding customers, and is great to have in class because by asking questions, she helps everyone around her learn more.”
Peterson credits her strong sales skills to the new CBA Center for Sales Excellence, where she is taking courses to earn a certificate in sales. The center, open to any student at UNL, was made possible through a $1.5 million gift from National Research Corporation and recently was named a 2015 “Top University for Professional Sales Education” by the Sales Education Foundation.
“I wanted to be part of the sales program, because I knew sales will be a part of any job throughout my career. I am an extrovert and enjoy talking to people. The sales program encourages us to work in groups and do role playing activities that helped me when I started working at the Lincoln Stars,” Peterson said.
Peterson’s internship with the Stars started in sales last September. She contacted companies and encouraged them to promote their business at the hockey games or asked them to rent the ice box for company retreats. A month later, she was promoted to game night promotions.
“Having a strong sales skill set definitely got my foot in the door with the Stars. With the promotion, I get to plan the intermission game activities, work with sponsors and tailor the experience to meet sponsor needs. It is fun to get the crowd involved while promoting a business in the community,” she said.
Peterson, who said her internship with the Stars doesn’t have a scheduled ending date, previously interned for Hudl, a sports software company in Lincoln, and marketed for the Adidas Street Team. She is also a member of Alpha Phi sorority.