A lifelong Minnesotan, Saint Mary’s senior Abby Nosbisch grew up a loyal Minnesota Vikings fan.
So, the opportunity to make U.S. Bank Stadium her office for the 2023 NFL season felt like a game-winning touchdown. A sports management major, Nosbisch served as an intern in the team’s guest experience department.
Nosbisch was first drawn to sports management after she job-shadowed her brother, who worked for the University of Minnesota’s football team. But what made it click was a project in her sports marketing class.
“As a part of a group project, I helped create a marketing plan for the Cardinals softball team,” Nosbisch, an outfielder on the team, said. “I really enjoyed the experience and thought I would want to do that for a larger sports team.”
And that opportunity would come sooner than she thought. During softball season, Saint Mary’s coach John Tschida had former player Alyssa Erdman attend a practice. At the practice, Erdman, who works as guest experience coordinator for the Vikings, spoke about her experience working for the team and encouraged anyone interested in sports management to apply for an internship.
“I got in touch with her, and we discussed opportunities. She helped me get my foot in the door and get an interview,” Nosbisch said. “Sometimes, in these situations, it’s definitely who you know.”
Once she landed the internship, Nosbisch went to work in guest services. Nosbisch worked the guest services, answering questions for fans and handing out promotional material and other items to fans as they came through the gates during training camp. Once the season kicked off, she spent the first quarter of games at the gate helping fans with navigation and ticketing issues. Once the first half was wrapped, she would make her way to the guest services booth. And work during the season meant regular trips from Winona to Minneapolis on gamedays.
“There were definitely some early mornings, but it was worth it,” she said.
For Nosbisch, nothing beat gameday.
“There were certain times where we would have a moment to watch the game and really take in the whole experience,” she said. “My favorite moment was the Packers game on New Year’s Eve. The place was packed, and it was so fun. Even though we didn’t win, everyone was excited to be there.”
Nosbisch also took advantage of every professional development opportunity that was offered throughout her internship.
“We had regular networking opportunities where we would go to the Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center and meet the team’s staff,” she said. “We also had a professional development day where we did mock interviews and learned more about the organization.”
And while the professional development opportunities aided her in her internship experience, she says her time Saint Mary’s also made her job interacting with fans much easier.
“Building interpersonal communication skills at Saint Mary’s made me ready to talk to fans, as well as working on a team,” she said.
With graduation on the horizon, Nosbisch has applied for an associate position in the team’s guest experience department, as well as ticket sales.
“The experience I had was once in a lifetime,” she said. “I’m so thankful for Saint Mary’s and the Vikings. Not a lot of people get to intern for a professional sports team, and I am able to say I did.”