Each year, the Sport Management Club takes an annual spring trip to network and explore different metropolitan cities within driving distances from Syracuse. My freshman year, we went to Cleveland and last year we visited Philadelphia. This year it was time for us to “kick it up a notch!” For this year’s trip we took the four hour trip, north of the border to explore Toronto, Canada! After making it across the border, and switching my car’s speedometer from mph to km/h (which I discovered I could do while waiting at the border), it was off to Toronto for an exciting weekend of networking and explorations!
Our first stop after navigating our way to the subway was with TrojanOne, an experiential marketing firm based in Toronto. TrojanOne’s past and present clients include Nike, Coca-Cola, Canadian Football League, Mattel, Canadian Olympic Committee and more! We had the opportunity to meet with their President & CEO, VP of Consumer Engagement, VP of Strategic Partnerships, their Senior Analyst, and Senior Manager of Recruitment. After a great and insightful two hour meeting, it was off to Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment at the Air Canada Centre. While at the arena, we got to meet with an Account Executive and a Ticket Analyst for the entire company, which really provided our entire group with a full-circle view of how a group such as Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment operates in comparison to a single-run franchise.
After a great game between the Knicks and Raptors, the networking didn’t end; we had the opportunity to head downstairs when the arena emptied out and meet with the Raptors Director of Basketball Operations, Teresa Resch. It was great to hear all about Teresa’s career path that led her to where she is today, as one of the leaders of one of the most iconic franchises in the NBA, the Toronto Raptors. The Raptors are unique in that they’re the only NBA franchise in Canada, they’re Canada’s team, and the whole country rallies behind them. The next day, the exploration didn’t stop! After a late night, we were able to sleep in and enjoy a nice morning in the city on our own before heading to the Toronto FC (MLS) game. For a majority of us, it was our first MLS game, and although it was a bit cold, the excitement of the atmosphere definitely made it an incredible experience.
When you come to SU, it’s important for you to find which club is right for you, and to get involved from your first few months on campus. I’ve been a part of the Sport Management Club since my freshman year, and it’s definitely made my time at Syracuse that much more unique. Not only have I had the opportunity to make life-long friends, but I’ve also had the opportunity to hold numerous leadership positions in our club and annual Charity Sports Auction, meet professionals in the industry both on and off campus, and lastly, take trips to cities that I’ve never been to before such as Cleveland and Toronto and have the opportunity to immerse myself in the city’s culture and the sport business industry!