April 22, 2013

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State Department of Athletics held its inaugural Bucks Go Pro kickoff breakfast Monday morning at the Fawcett Center, welcoming 19 student-athletes from 12 different sports who will be interning within the athletics department this summer.

The program aims to give student-athletes valuable experience working within a university athletics department and helping them in their desired career paths.

Through a competitive interview process, these 19 student-athletes were chosen among a total of 76 applicants in the first year of the program. They will be working a minimum of 100 hours and will be paid $1,500 for their duties.

Senior associate athletics director Heather Lyke, who is heading up the program, addressed the student-athletes Monday morning with five goals for the summer internship:

1. Provide the student-athletes with meaningful work experience in a professional setting;
2. Help enhance student-athletes’ resumes;
3. Teach student-athletes how to develop a network of colleagues;
4. Expand our student-athletes’ references beyond their professors and coaches; and
5. Help our student-athletes be better prepared for life after college and represent Ohio State with class in their professional endeavors.

“Our Bucks Go Pro program was created to directly and positively impact our student-athletes,” Lyke said. “Our goal is to help them find meaningful work through internships, be better prepared for career opportunities and educate them about the process of building a career.

“It was a privilege to welcome our first class of Bucks Go Pro interns this morning. They competed in a selective interview process against their peers and `won the interview.’ We are fortunate to work with this group of bright and dynamic student-athletes who have tremendous potential in life.”

Carly Pendleton, a sophomore from Lindsey, Ohio, and a member of the women’s track and field team, is majoring in communications with a minor in business and will be interning with the camps office.

“Once I heard about the program I thought it was really interesting so I pursued it,” Pendleton said. “I’m looking to get even more experience in the camps field because I have never really answered phones or done much of the office aspects of the job. I’ve always been working with the kids and the athletes. Down the road I want to maybe start off in public relations and ultimately open my own business where I am helping under-privileged kids go on to college through athletics.”

Eric Philippou, a junior on the men’s fencing team from Garden City, N.Y., will be interning with the video services department.

“I’m really looking to see if the social media and video services career path is something that I’d be interested in, so it’s great they are offering this program,” Philippou said. “Even if it is not (my chosen career path), I know there are a lot of skills I will learn that will help me in whatever I choose to do. Ultimately, I want to get my MBA and maybe work in Washington or New York.”

Director of athletics and associate vice president Gene Smith also was in attendance and shared his professional experiences with the student-athletes.

“Everything our student-athletes have learned within their sports, they are now going to take those into the work environment,” Smith said. “Relationships are critical in the professional world and that is just one of the things they will learn more about. This is a wonderful opportunity for them and what this hopefully will do for them is open tremendous doors down the road.”

The Class of 2013 Ohio State Student-Athlete Summer Interns includes Victoria Aepli (women’s gymnastics; event management), Dominique Alexander (men’s lacrosse captain; sports administration), Alexis Allen (field hockey; Schottenstein Center), Katarzyna Dabrowa (women’s fencing captain; human resources), Alex DeLuca (women’s gymnastics captain; fan experience), Aleksandra Dobranic (women’s basketball; creative services), Cara Facchina (women’s lacrosse captain; business office), Christienne Linton (women’s track and field captain; LiFE Sports), Kelcey McKinney (women’s track and field; human resources), Minori Minagawa (women’s cross country; golf course), Laura Napolitano (field hockey captain; SASSO), Carly Pendleton (women’s track and field; camps), Eric Philippou (men’s fencing; video services), Sara Schmitt (women’s ice hockey; information technology), Dara Schnoll (rowing; sports administration), Lenzelle Smth, Jr. (men’s basketball; development), Maria Swartz (field hockey; sports performance), Kim Theut (women’s ice hockey; facilities) and Jamie Wood (football; ticket office).

Be sure and follow the program on Twitter at @BucksGoPro.