Internship Offers Insight to How the NHL Connects with Fans
When Patrick ’20 applied for his Cullman Scholarship in the Winter of 2019, he planned to work in the marketing department for the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks that July. Through some unexpected twists and turns, a tale of injury, recovery, and community support, Patrick found his way to a different internship altogether with the Tampa Bay Lightning this spring.
In early March, Patrick finally embarked on a two-week internship with the Lightning, where he worked with the team’s promotions manager and the director of hockey administration to create social-media content, host away-game watch parties with fans, and conduct community outreach projects with the mascot ThunderBug, including a visit with patients at the local children’s hospital.
“Marketing is something I have been interested in, so I wanted to use the Cullman Scholarship as an opportunity to explore this as a career option,” says Patrick who is attending Bentley University in the fall. “My first attempt at my Cullman was brought to an unexpected halt when I broke my leg last summer jumping off a boat in Costa Rica. When I was supposed to be starting my Cullman, I was in a hospital bed having surgery.”
Although the Canucks rescheduled his internship for this coming summer, Patrick still wanted to experience a Cullman Scholarship before his KUA graduation. With the support of the Cullman Scholar Committee, Patrick searched for alternative internships to complete within this academic year. With help from Associate Dean of Students Sam Ftorek, Patrick was able to land a spot with the marketing team in Tampa.
At the end of his first week on the job, the COVID-19 pandemic prompted the NHL to put its season on hold and the Lightning paused Patrick’s internship and offered him the opportunity to resume at a later date.
“This whole experience has taught me to always keep going and never give up,” says Patrick, who is now looking at business and sports marketing options to pursue in college, and has two future NHL internship opportunities lined up to continue down this path.
Patrick, after growing up a die-hard New England hockey fan acknowledged that “the whole experience was amazing. Obviously, the Bruins are still my favorite team, but Tampa is up there too now.”
Patrick’s experience was a part of the Cullman Scholarship Program, which supports students in off-campus study opportunities. The scholarship program, established in 1983 by Hugh Cullman ’42, provided 11 students with opportunities like Patrick’s in 2019. This spring, 10 students were awarded Cullman Scholarships for 2020.
Founded in 1813, Kimball Union Academy is one of the country's oldest private boarding high schools. KUA blends the best of the New England boarding tradition with an innovative, modern educational program for a diverse and global group of day and boarding students. Located in Meriden, New Hampshire, in the heart of the Upper Valley, Kimball Union is minutes from Dartmouth College and has direct access to Boston and New York.