The Internship Experience: Ryan Rose - University of Rochester Athletics (2024)

5/13/2024 9:30:00 AM

By: Dennis O'Donnell

INTRODUTION: As a quarterback, Ryan Rose spends practice week focusing on the challenge waiting at week's end. He spent Mondays through Fridays in football's version of "an office" – the practice field. Come the weekend he was on the field. At his internship with Trackhouse Entertainment, he was out of the office but on the field in a different venue – working at a NASCAR Cup Series races. He details that job here.

This is the ninth of a series of Q&A's on University of Rochester student-athletes' internship experiences authored by Dennis O'Donnell.

You interned over the summer with Trackhouse Entertainment. When did you learn about the internship and how did you go about applying for it?
I first had the idea of an internship at Trackhouse after discussing the possibility of working there over the summer with a family friend who is an executive of the team. Trackhouse does not have a true internship program, so my experience was a sort of one-off opportunity. During the discussion of potentially working there, I interviewed with multiple executives of the company including the President, Chief Financial Officer, and Chief Branding Officer.

Trackhouse is involved with motorsports and has drivers in the NASCAR Cup Series. Have you been a longtime NASCAR fan? How did you become interested in auto racing?
I first became a NASCAR fan during the 2021-2022 season, so I am not a long standing fan. I initially became interested as the company that my father and sisters work for became one of the lead sponsors of Trackhouse racing. I had the opportunity to attend a few races during that season and instantly was hooked.

Did you attend any NASCAR Cup Series events? Were you in the stands or on the infield?
During my internship I had the opportunity to attend six Cups Series races. My responsibilities at the track included hosting many sponsor company's guest lists by providing tours of the haulers and pit area, distributing headsets to listen to the car's radio, and setting up hospitality areas. The guest's experiences helped to reinforce the company's investments in Trackhouse and encourage further sponsorship.

Did you work in Nashville?
I was located at Trackhouse's primary racing operations office in Concord, NC. I did have the opportunity to travel to the Cup Series race in Nashville where Ross Chastain went to the victory lane for the first time that season.

Entertainment and sports are two of the divisions for Trackhouse. Did you work more with one division than the other?
I had the opportunity to work with both divisions of Trackhouse. The entertainment element of Trackhouse is still one that is being formed, but I did have the opportunity to plan a few events. I primarily worked with the racing department doing analytics for the social media team, maintaining sponsor relationships through weekly calls, and performing valuations of owned and earned media provided to sponsors.

What did a typical day look like for you?
A typical weekday for me included arriving at the office at 9am and staying through 4 or 5pm. Throughout my workday I attended multiple video calls with sponsor companies coordinating events and the execution of team obligations. Some days I went through training with the pit crew and attended their practices. When not on calls or working with the pit crew, I spent my day analyzing media reach and engagements and creating a database for the company to use after my internship ended.

Trackhouse is a joint effort of Justin Marks and Armando Christian "Pitbull" Perez, the Grammy-winning rapper. How involved were they on a daily basis?
Unfortunately, I never got the opportunity to interact with Armando, but I did communicate with members of his team about events and team operations. Justin Marks is very involved in the day-to-day operations of Trackhouse and I was able to interact with him directly on a consistent basis. When I led sponsor events at various races he was almost always in attendance and interacting with guests. Throughout the week he would attend our company conference calls and hear feedback and offer suggestions on our operations.

During the summer, did you have any chance to work out in preparation for the 2023 UR football season?
I had a unique opportunity to train for the season in an unusual way. NASCAR pit crews are made up of primarily former collegiate athletes, including a large population of football players. I was invited to participate in their workouts throughout the summer and made some connections with major Division 1 football talent. Their workouts were extremely strenuous and often left me more exhausted than I would be after on-campus training sessions. Pit crew members are required to have a combination of impressive physical strength as well as have excellent endurance to withstand the high temperatures felt during races.

Was there anything you took away from the internship that helped you once football pre-season camp began?
Outside of just being in great shape after working out with the pit crew all summer, I learned many leadership skills from the former collegiate athletes. Many of them had very decorated careers in their sports and were able to share knowledge with me on how they got to that level. Pit crew coach Shaun Peet was also very willing to share leadership tactics and overall advice with me in order to help create a more successful team atmosphere when I returned to Rochester.

You are majoring in Business Finance. What interested you about that field?
A strong suit of mine has always been numbers, and I have been very interested in how companies run day-to-day operations to maximize their efforts. (My) major of Business Finance is a way that I would be able to use both of those skills to get a versatile degree that I can use in many different settings.

As you looked at colleges, what made the University attractive as a place to study and a place to play football?
Of course Rochester is nationally recognized for academic excellence, but there were also other factors that drew me here. In my search for colleges, I didn't have much luck finding many schools that had true undergraduate business programs. I noticed lots of other high academic schools advertised their economics degrees, but didn't have any options for students that were more specifically interested in Business. The football side of the decision was rather easy for me. I saw a program that had great potential due to amazing facilities, a well-respected coaching staff, and competed in a prestigious conference. Being able to get in on the ground floor of a program that I knew was destined for success was a huge factor in my decision making.

The Internship Experience: Ryan Rose - University of Rochester Athletics (2024)
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