As my time here at Chicago Event Management is coming to an end, I have been lucky enough to say I have experienced yet another race event, the Girls on the Run 5K. Chicago Event Management offers their business in certain areas to the Girls on the Run 5K. The Girls on the Run program is for young girls striving towards a prospective goal of finishing a 5K race.
These girls are endowed with scholarships in order to train with volunteer coaches and learn about healthy lifestyles. The 5K includes girls from schools throughout Chicago, friends and family participants, and any community participants. The staff from Chicago Event Management helps with products, registrations, and operations for this 5K.
I was chosen to assist with the registration leading up to race morning. I organized bib numbers and participants, worked at the running store location to hand out packets for participants, and entered any registration data into the system. I had another opportunity to meet more employers who work in the race management industry and learn about their vast experiences and backgrounds.
Range of Positions:
The experience I have gained from interning with Chicago Event Management has been multidimensional because I have learned about not only one position, but various positions in the office. These positions range from sponsorship and sales, marketing, operations and logistics to volunteer coordination, public relations and communications, customer service, and administrative responsibilities. It has been such a great opportunity to see what jobs and duties the aforementioned positions entail and how they work together to create one big event, such as the Chicago Marathon. The employers have been more than willing to show me the ropes and guide me along the process of planning the Marathon.
Go the extra mile:
One of the most important things I have learned during my internship is to reach out to others. The best way to find out more or to have something clarified is to just to simply ask someone. The worst they can do is say no, but at least you can say you tried. I have found that most people really do enjoy teaching and helping you when they know the answers and have been in our shoes before. Additionally, I have learned that, if I want to get to where I want to go in the future, I have to use any and all resources that I can to get there.
With that being said, I set up a meeting with the president of Chicago Event Management, Carey Pinkowski. Carey is the face of the Marathon and has a very important role as a leader and integral piece to this large puzzle. I was able to ask him many questions about his story and how he has climbed up the ladder to the position he is in now for Chicago Event Management and the Chicago Marathon. The best thing about meeting with Carey Pinkowski was that he was more than willing to speak with me and he offered to answer any questions or concerns that I may have in the future. I have been fortunate enough to have met with many other experienced employers during my internship and I have learned something from each and every one of them.
Because of my internship with Chicago Event Management, I am another step closer to finding a career I am passionate about. This internship has helped guide me to where I would like to end up in the long run. I have successfully built and cultivated lasting relationships and I have experienced a once in a lifetime opportunity with the Chicago Marathon. The opportunities that I believe I took advantage of have opened new doors for my future career path and I look forward to find out what the next chapter of my life entails.
Paige Tonz is a senior Communication Studies major at Northwestern. As an intern with Chicago Event Management this fall, she’s helping to plan the Chicago Marathon.