Human Race

A Step Closer to Finding My Million-Dollar Answer

By: Tina Schirmeister, Living Sport London 2018 Participant & student at California State University Fresno

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What do you want to do for the rest of your life? That is the million-dollar question many search daily to answer. All I knew about my answer was something involving sports. Over time I have been given the same pieces of advice to help me succeed in this competitive environment: gain experience in your field, network with current professionals, and find multiple opportunities that will set yourself apart from everyone else. I along with 25 other undergraduates or recent graduates from around the country found our opportunity through Living Sport.

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When I first discovered this opportunity, I thought I had a very small chance of actually being accepted into the program. I applied through Sports Business Solutions thinking I was a long shot, however; within two weeks I had completed an interview and was accepted into the London 2018 program. At the time, I was unaware of how much this trip was going to reshape my life individually and professionally.

Before starting my adventure in London, I made the goal to make some sort of impact on the lives of the strangers I would be traveling with, whether it be professionally or just for a laugh. With less than 10 days to accomplish this, I would need to let go of my tendency to slightly shy away and fully express myself wholeheartedly immediately. I wanted to use this opportunity to improve my interpersonal skills and networking abilities in a low-pressure setting.

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My mentor for the trip, Shane Baglini, the Chair of the Living Sport Advisory Board, presented me the opportunity to shoot footage from the GoPro for our trip video montage during our first full day touring London. Initially, I was extremely nervous with zero GoPro experience and very little recording experience. I started by recording everyone in their natural habitat observing and walking around the city. However, I soon realized I wanted to see everyone's personalities interact with the GoPro. Someone had to start, so with the GoPro in hand, I allowed my personality to shine through, hoping to lead others to do the same. The GoPro also gave me a reason to approach everyone and ask questions, no matter how basic or random. With the GoPro, I felt more comfortable interacting with everyone, creating impromptu interviews to describe our adventure. I felt like I could be my crazy, fun-loving, dancing self and I wanted to keep that going through the rest of the trip. On the first day, my fellow travelers helped me shed a layer of self-consciousness I did not know I was holding onto, and I do not ever want that layer back.

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While recording broke through a personal barrier, our work experience at the Triathlon brought growth to my career. When meeting new people at the event and telling them how I traveled to London for this incredible experience I felt so much joy and pride for myself and my fellow participants. It felt surreal that I was not only visiting a new country and getting to know the locals but also getting international work experience!

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The final day of our trip consisted of workshops led by our mentors (industry professionals). These workshops helped us explore our career options in sports, but most importantly helped evolve our passions and personalities. Living Sport did not put anyone in a bubble, and if you had a unique strength or talent - it was used to our advantage. Alicia Marinelli and her team of mentors provided so much information and expertise to everyone specifically for their career goals. It was an honor to not only meet everyone, but learn from them throughout the trip.

Upon returning home from our trip to London, I am no longer afraid to start conversations because Living Sport helped me evolve into a stronger, more confident young professional with great tools to achieve my goals. With a deeper love and understanding for the sports industry, I can clearly describe my current career goal of sport operations with others. While I am still searching for my precise answer to that million-dollar question during my final semesters of college, thanks to Living Sport and my international experience in London, I am so much closer.

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Making A Change

By: Chris Kuo, Living Sport London 2018 Participant & Brand Ambassador for the Pittsburgh Steelers

I have been working in the sports industry for the Pittsburgh Steelers for the past three years, and have loved every second of it (two years as an undergraduate, seasonally, then in an expanded role after I graduated). However unfortunately, I didn’t find my passion and desire to work in sports until after my junior year of college, during my first year with the Steelers. So a few months ago there I was, a recent college graduate with an Advertising degree, but a newfound desire to work in sports that I would not let die. This meant I had to find a new way to gain experience in the sports industry, but how? Should I go to graduate school, try to find an internship or something else? No matter what my choice, I knew I had some important life decisions coming up.

Most important decisions in life are long and thought-out processes, choices that take time before being made. My decision to apply and ultimately go on this once in a lifetime trip was anything but that. I had applied on a whim while scrolling thorough job opportunities. I applied near the very end of the application process, and being one of the last people to apply, was asked if I could do a phone interview within a couple days of applying. Much to my surprise, the person who interviewed me was Alicia Marinelli, Living Sport LLC’s founder. I could immediately hear the passion in her voice when she talked about this program she had worked so hard to create, and her love for the sports industry itself. After hearing about the cost of the trip, I hesitated and asked if I could get back to her the next day. But in my heart I was already sold, and I didn’t want to let a chance like this get away from me. So I emailed her back as soon as I got home from work letting her know I was in!


A few weeks later, the next thing I knew, I was taking a bus eight and a half hours from Pittsburgh to New York, and then a Delta flight from JFK to Heathrow International in London, England. I wasn’t alone on this trip, not including myself; there were twenty-five other young sports professionals, and four mentors including Alicia. They were all incredible people to get to know, and it was great having the opportunity to hear the mentors’ stories of all the experiences they have had in their sports careers so far.   

Our first two days in London, we received private tours of different local historical sites and two sporting facilities, Emirates Stadium and the 2012 London Olympic Village. Besides helping us gain more knowledge about the country we were calling home for the next week, these first few days also allowed us to learn more about each other and the world-class event for which we had come halfway across the world to work. 

The second half of our trip was focused on preparing and working at The Royal Windsor Triathlon. The Triathlon was incredibly well organized from the first set-up day all the way through to teardown after the event was over. Human Race, the company who organizes The Royale Windsor Triathlon along with a number of other events all over the UK, had a staff that was really fun to work with and loved to help teach us things. We all definitely learned more than we thought we would in the course of only three days.


By the end of the trip I think I can safely say, that we all not only had our expectations met for what we thought we would learn, see and experience, but also so much more. And for only being together for a little over a week, we all became very close in that time and formed friendships that I believe will last a long time. I personally still communicate with a few of the people I met from the program almost every day.

Fast forward to today. Since the trip, I still work for the Steelers, but thanks to Living Sport and my decision to take a risk and travel across the globe, I have also been hired by Xperience, a global brand activation company. This experience not only helped me get a job, it opened my eyes to all the places sports can take you, and how deciding to start over and make a change in order to follow your passion, while difficult, is a chance worth taking!