ALFRED – Alfred State College students were able to tour the athletic facilities at Penn State University during the spring semester, gaining some valuable advice and insight into sport facility management along the way.
Through guided tours by building coordinators Brad Caldwell, Rick James, and Chris Whittemore, Alfred State students toured Beaver Stadium, Bryce Jordan Center, Pegula Ice Arena, Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track, and Holuba Hall (the indoor football, men's lacrosse, and women's lacrosse practice facility). In addition to tours of Big 10 Conference training and competition facilities, students gained valuable sport facility and event management insight, career advice, and perspective from numerous industry professionals.
Students who attended the event included Kelvin Allotey (Bronx), Cody Greene (Andover), Will Kershner (Dansville), Joseph Moscato (East Rockaway), Satchel Page (Centreville, VA), Justin Polins (Bay Shore), Ben Reynolds (Cuba), Chris Smerina (Staten Island), Learoy Smith Jr. (Yonkers), Leigh Swartzfager (Nunda), Juwan Zapata (Bronx), Dashown Willson (Bronx), and Kadeem Charles (Queens Village). All of the students are sport management majors except Wilson and Charles, who are criminal justice students.
Accompanying the students on the trip were John Lisec and Robert Romano, both assistant professors in the Business Department.
Page noted the trip allowed students the opportunity to visit and tour a highly respected Division I school’s athletic facilities, and was a great chance to learn and understand what it takes to properly run them.
“I feel we all benefited from also having the opportunity to meet and make connections with very experienced individuals in the facilities world,” he said. “I am truly grateful, being a Division III football student athlete, to visit and take the opportunity to learn from this prestigious university.”
Swartzfager said she was excited to tour the Penn State facilities, and felt that she learned a lot about how much time and effort goes into maintaining them.
“I think it was a great eye-opener for everyone who attended the trip because we learned what it really takes to control and construct a facility,” she said. “Most importantly, we could not have done this trip without Professor Romano. He truly has made learning enjoyable. We all appreciate his hard work and dedication he puts toward his students and making sure we get the best experience.”
Lisec said that while touring Penn State University's athletic facilities, Alfred State students gained valuable and practical knowledge surrounding the development and construction of college sport's premier training and competition facilities.
“Additionally, students gained significant perspective and understanding surrounding the operations and utilization of each facility,” he said. “Students also gained industry insight and networking opportunities from top sport industry professionals within the Big 10 Conference. These tours are an excellent example of the continual emphasis on hands-on and applied learning within the Alfred State sport management program.”