Amanda Fenkner

Amanda Fenkner ’08 nabs a ticket to success with the Washington Redskins

Ticket to Success
Amanda Fenkner ‘08 discovered her dream job in the most unexpected of places: the stands of a
college basketball game.

It was there, while watching a Temple Owls match with her round-ball teammates from Tamaqua High, that she was plucked from the crowd, destined for greatness, to participate in a fan challenge. The task— make three shots, a three-pointer, foul shot and a layup, all in just 30 seconds.

As it turns out, it wasn’t the competition that piqued the point guard’s interest. It was the chance to corner the woman who selected her from the stands so she could learn about career opportunities.

“We were waiting around for a timeout,” Fenkner recalls. “I got to interview her on the sidelines: ‘This is great! You’re just hanging out watching the game. How do I get this job?’“

That encounter proved to be fortuitous and led the three-sport athlete, raised to cheer for all the Philadelphia sports teams, to Alvernia’s popular sport management program, where she excelled. Fenkner added another major in marketing.

Now she uses both majors as manager of business operations and ticketing for the Washington Redskins, a storied National Football League franchise that plays near the nation’s capital.

She’s in charge of filling the 83,031 seats at FedEx Field during each home game. She also manages the list of season-ticket holders and organizes the details behind special events, like December’s Army-Navy Game.

Fenkner’s first internship was with the Reading Express indoor football team, where her duties serendipitously included choosing spectators to take part in events during game breaks. She also interned in the Philadelphia Eagles ticket office and behind the scenes during Reading Railers basketball games.

Shortly after graduating in 2008 she landed a job in the sales office for the Philadelphia 76ers. Months later she abandoned her allegiance to the Eagles when the Redskins hired her in their ticket office.

She can put in 60 or even 80 hours of work a week when a home game is coming up. If a player’s friends or relatives are coming to a game she handles their special requests, like arranging a seat near the stadium entrance. After each game she sends a report to the NFL detailing what the Redskins earned from ticket sales so the revenue can be split among all the teams according to a prescribed formula.

“I don’t like to be idle,” Fenkner says. “I challenge myself to learn.”

Did you know?

A National Leadership Council for Liberal Education and America's Promise study found that participating employers and recent college graduates agreed on the necessity of out of the classroom experiences. The study emphasizes the importance of providing students with important knowledge and skills but also experience putting that knowledge and skills to practical use in "real-world" settings.

Did you know?

Seventy-six percent of participating employers put "teamwork skills and the ability to collaborate with others in diverse group settings" at the top of their list of desired capabilities in new employees, according to a National Leadership Council for Liberal Education and America's Promise study. These are among the skills fostered by real-world learning experiences.

Did you know?

Service learning is a method of providing personal and academic development through work with established nonprofit organizations in the community. It is an avenue to introduce students to a professional environment without the extensive commitments of an internship.

Did you know?

Service learning provides ideal real world learning opportunities. According to SmartBlog on Leadership, doing volunteer and service work for a non-profit organization that is connected to your major or academic program of study helps develop leadership skills, expands your perspective of the world, allows you to discover new skills in a safe environment, and develops a larger network of real world contacts to draw upon once you graduate.

Did you know?

Service learning can take you outside of your comfort zone, giving you an opportunity to work with new challenges, people, politics and interpersonal dynamics. It also offers new perspective on priorities. Hanging out with people who have had different life experiences encourages you to tackle challenges from different angles. Julie Zolfo, founder of Make Success Matter said that she volunteered for six weeks at the schools in New Delhi, India.

Did you know?

"Alvernia's Career Development Center works with students to find avenues for employment, internships, co-ops, career exploration, resume development, and graduate school options. Center staff help students assess their options and identify their own "brand" to complement their life after Alvernia.

Did you know?

A recent career fair at Alvernia attracted more than 55 employers who were seeking to hire employees, co-ops and interns for their organizations. Career fairs like this one are fertile ground for students seeking real world learning opportunities and to reap the benefits of such as employers look to to hire staff members who have honed their skills and abilities via practical experiences in real situations.

Did you know?

Since its inception, Alvernia has offered real world opportunities with an emphasis on service and careers that help those in need. Field experiences in areas like criminal justice, social work, nursing, occupational therapy, health care science and teacher training among others provide our students with rich learning opportunities to test drive what it's like to work in that profession.

Did you know?

In a recent American Association of Colleges and Universities survey of 302 employers, 79 percent said institutions of higher learning should emphasize helping students apply what they learn in real-world settings, and 66 percent said that completing an internship or community field project would help prepare students for success.