Parker Nguyen is a first year student from Fairfax, VA. He's also double specializing in Operations Management and Data Analytics, interning for D.C. United, and managing the men's lacrosse team. Parker shares what his experience has been like and how he manages to do it all:
What's your internship with D.C. United like?
"My internship with D.C. United is with the Ticket Sales & Service department, and it is probably the best first internship I could have gotten. The work environment is laid back but still super work oriented. My team and I still have to make project deadlines by the middle and end of the week, but that doesn't stop us from having a little fun during our meetings.
I think a big part of why this internship is so fun is because in sales you can’t be a robot, you have to be able to be genuine and have organic conversations with people. I look forward to meeting with my supervisors and fellow interns everyday because we have genuine fun while also working and learning. Although the work environment is remote and through Zoom, I can feel the energy through the camera. One of the best things about this internship is when our supervisors introduced us to other departments within D.C. United. For example, I was able to meet the President of Business Operations, Danita Johnson. Hopefully in the near future, I will be able to work a game day match at Audi Field, which I’m sure would probably be the best part of the whole internship."
What got you interested in working with them?
"Over winter break, I reached out to Brett LaPrad in the Busch School. I expressed my interests to him in working in sports someday, and he was able to get me the contact info of a recruiter at D.C. United. At the time I didn’t think too much of it because I was just a Freshman and D.C. United is a big name in the DMV area. I actually grew up going to some D.C United games, and I’ve always been familiar with the team. The thought of being able to intern with them was exciting. After talking with some people who previously worked at D.C United and hearing about their experiences, I knew I wanted to intern there."
What responsibilities do you have as a manager of the men's lacrosse team?
"I’m just one manager out of three, so it doesn't all fall on me. Some responsibilities include recording certain parts of practice, handling the camera/tripod equipment, working the clock during practice, doing any tasks Coach Sax asks of us, and just supporting the team in general. Being a manager is pretty cool because a lot of my buddies are on the team and at the same I can help the team out."
How do you manage your time with such a busy schedule?
"The number one way I manage my busy schedule is by utilizing a day planner/agenda. I write all major assignment due dates in the calendar view, and I write my day to day tasks or homework assignments in the daily view of the planner. Along with that, I put any major meetings, interviews, workshifts, or events in my Google calendar. I think that having things down on paper or on a calendar app makes things simple and easy. For me personally, it’s all about structure and having things written down so that I don't need to keep everything in my head."
What suggestions do you have for students looking to get involved in as many exciting opportunities as you?
"I would say just be open to new opportunities and be proactive. I’d say a lot of the things I’m doing right now were not offered to me. I had to be proactive and reach out to people about opportunities. For example, I had to reach out to Jess (my boss at the Kane) prior to the Fall Semester starting about working at the Kane. I also had to send several emails to the D.C. United recruiter in order to earn just an informational meeting. My advice would be to reach out to the schools resources and expand your network so that you are exposed to a ton of opportunities like working at the gym or managing lacrosse."