A ‘Super’ opportunity

(Above) Kristin Mathis celebrates Kansas City’s AFC Championship on the field as a member of the Chief’s organization.-Submitted photo.

Internship makes Mathis a member of the Chief’s team

by Marianne Gasaway

Sunday’s Super Bowl has a Clear Lake connection.

Kristin Mathis, who attended elementary and middle school here before her father, CLHS Activities Director Jay Mathis accepted another position which moved the family to Eldora, Iowa, is now a member of the Super Bowl bound Kansas City Chiefs.

Obviously, Kristin isn’t on the field, but she is definitely a member of the Kansas City team.

She has taken a year away from her studies at the University of Iowa to serve as Ticket Sales Marketing and Analytics intern for the Chief’s organization.

An Introduction to Marketing course taken during her freshman year at the University of Iowa inspired Kristin to pursue a career in marketing.

“I like the analytics side of marketing because I like to see the data behind decision making and see how consumers are thinking,” she said.  “After graduation, I would really love to do more with international business and marketing products to other countries and cultures.”

In fact, it was while studying abroad in Ireland that Kristin saw the opportunity to work with the Chiefs posted on the TeamWorkOnline.com website.

“I was just looking for an internship for the summer, but then I saw this opportunity and the description was perfect for me, so I decided to just give it a try— never thinking I’d get even an interview.  I ended up doing a Skype interview with them and was offered the internship a couple of weeks later.”

Kristin said she was apprehensive to take a year off from school, but the internship has provided experience and confidence in herself professionally.

“No day is ever the same, that is for sure, and it’s been especially crazy with the playoffs and now the Super Bowl,” she said.

Kristin’s main responsibilities are creating all email communications that go out to KC season ticket members, community, fans, event-goers and more.  She also helps track how those emails and Facebook ads perform.

“I pull a lot of reports on our ticket sales, help with events, update customer information, and whatever else they need extra hands for.  I just got to go to Union Station one day to help fans take pictures with our new Patrick Mahomes bobble head, so I just never know what a day is going to bring!”

On game days Kristin is typically at a gate assisting fans in using mobile ticketing, which the NFL implemented this season.

“Fans are always really excited when they enter into Arrowhead, so it’s fun to welcome them and be a part of their experience.  Our physical product we sell are tickets, but we are really selling the whole experience of a game day a Arrowhead Stadium, and I love that that is so important to the Chiefs and they are constantly working to make the experience even better for fans.  I’m usually done with my responsibilities by the end of the first quarter, so then I get to join the rest of the fans and watch some great football.”

The playoffs were an especially exhilarating time for Kristin as a member of the Chief’s organization.

“It was definitely an all hands on deck sort of craziness.  We just never knew what was going to happen and there were a lot of “ifs,” like the Dolphins beating the Patriots to get us a bye week.  Then the Ravens losing and us making a huge comeback to get us to host the AFC Championship.  We only had a week to plan the AFC Championship.  I had to make emails for every possible situation.  If we played the Bills, Patriots, or Texans for the Divisional playoff game, if we won and the Ravens won, if we won and the Ravens lost, etc.  We really had to be one step ahead, but also be flexible and ready for anything.”

Mathis started her internship in August and will be done at the end of April.  After she finishes up her degree at Iowa she may try to work for a sports team.

    “I love the Chiefs organization and being a part of something so huge has been an amazing experience. I was never super interested in having a career in sports before this internship— I honestly just thought it’d be fun and I’d learn a lot but that I wouldn’t want to do it forever. I definitely have had fun and have learned a lot, but I love how exciting it is with how fast things can change and how big of a platform we’re on so I think I was wrong about not wanting to do it for a career.”

That sentiment is what Kristin considers to be the biggest lesson she has learned.

“Never make yourself smaller or think you’re dreaming too big. I never thought when I applied that I was even remotely qualified.  I told my sister Katie that and she reminded me of all the other internships and jobs that I’ve had that did make me qualified. Standing on the field after the AFC Championship game was such a special moment for me. I thought back to all the other internships I applied for in the past and didn’t get, yet here I was in front of 70,000 people with my team headed to the Super Bowl for the first time in 50 years. I let myself dream big and I ended up somewhere even bigger, and I know this is just the beginning for me.”

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