The Three Stripe Journey by Heather Luce

My name is Heather Luce and I am a proud alumna of the University of Louisville. Throughout my college career, I have held numerous positions and worked for some of the most talented people in sports. However, one opportunity completely changed the trajectory of my career: the adidas Student Brand Ambassador Program. As an adidas Student Brand Ambassador, I led a team of the most talented, dedicated, and innovative students at Louisville. Our mission was to #OwnTheCampus, and we did just that.

 

adidas brand ambassadors promote the brand on campus

 

During the past two years, our team has won the Best Social Media Team and the Best Overall Team back-to-back. Our tremendous success throughout the program simply would not have been possible without the Program Strategists at YMC. They are our coaches and our biggest motivation. During the first year of the program, my Strategist was Jose Colchao, who is now my mentor and great friend. Jose has always made time to coach me on interviews, provide feedback on my resume and cover letters, and give me career advice. I would not have experienced that level of success had it not been for Jose’s mentorship.

The adidas Student Brand Ambassador Program opened doors for me that I never could have imagined. My senior year, I earned a position as an adidas Marketing Assistant with the University of Louisville Athletic Department. I was able to do incredible things like travel to Portland to tour adidas village and meet the executives of adidas. In March, my dream came true when I was offered a position as an NBA Team Services Specialist with the adidas Sports Licensed Division.

 

college brand ambassadors hold the adidas flag

 

As I reflect on my college career and prepare for the future, I believe these are the three keys to success in sports.

 

Networking

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” I believe that who you know gets you there and what you know gets you further. Shake as many hands as you can. Surround yourself with positive people who empower you. Remember names, send thank you notes, and make lasting first impressions. A recommendation letter from the right person can make all the difference in the world.

 

Experience

Millions of people want to work in sports. At the end of the day, the candidate with the best skills and experience is going to get the job. Internships are critical. Volunteer for everything you possibly can. Learn how to market yourself. Your resume and cover letters should make employers thrilled to meet you to learn more about how you can help their company.

 

Want it more than anyone. Work harder than everyone.

Your work ethic is one of the most important aspects of your personality. We see athletes all the time with all the potential in the world, but they lack the determination or work ethic to be the best. You have to outshine everyone else. Don’t just do what is expected of you. Go the extra mile. Exceed expectations and be the greatness that you want to achieve.

 

college brand ambassador wearing the adidas brand at graduation

 

Want to learn more about Heather and follow her journey? Follow her on Twitter or Instagram[email protected]_Heather or email her at [email protected].

 

Calling All Dog Lovers; The Truth About Fostering

Here at YMC, we are all huge animals lovers (don’t believe me? Check out our Instagram @youthmarketing.) Some of us are lucky enough to own our own four legged friend, while others look forward to seeing their beloved family pets during visits home. My family has a crazy Carin Terrier, and one of the hardest parts about moving to my apartment in the city was leaving my furry friend behind. My roommate was in a similar situation, having to say goodbye to her darling Dachshund, and during the first few weeks of living in our new place we spent hours chatting about how much we missed having a bundle of fluffy energy running around.

 

Leaving behind a pet when moving out for the first time or going to college is hard, especially if you’re living in a new place and just want to see a friendly face at the end of the day. My roommate and I discussed getting involved in the DC community when we finally had an epiphany; we loved animals and wanted to fill the void of not having one, so volunteering at the local animal shelter would be a perfect fit. Before we knew it, we had filled out an application to become dog fosters and were standing in the Washington Humane Society (WHS) ready to undergo foster training.

 

Part of the training dog fostered by Youth Marketing Connection staffincluded a tour of the facilities, which was filled with cats, dogs, and even a cage full of guinea pigs. Walking through the hallways I was overcome with emotion, there were so many dogs, some cages even had 3 dogs in one small space due to overcrowding. In only 30 minutes, we saw 3 dogs come into the shelter and learned that WHS has an average of 33 dogs surrendered or turned in from animal control every day. When we walked in the doors of the shelter we weren’t 100% sure if we wanted to open our apartment to a pet, but after seeing how much help the shelter needed, we knew we weren’t going home without a dog. Soon enough we were loading 2 Pit Bull mix puppies, crates, and baby gates into my car and oh boy, were we in for an adventure.

 

To make a long story short, 2 puppies was one dog too many for our tiny, 800 square foot apartment, so we had to return the boy pup to the shelter, but he was adopted 2 weeks later! We ended up falling in love with West, as did everyone in the YMC DC office, because we have a wonderful pet-friendly policy and I often brought her to work. When West got adopted, my roommate and I were beside ourselves because she had become part of our little family. She’s still the background on both of our phones! However, we knew that she would be an amazing companion to the family that gave her a forever home and be happier in the suburbs than the city (we continue to solicit her new owners for pictures.) The answer to filling the emptiness of our apartment? Foster another dog in need of a place to stay! We’ve fostered 4 dogs to date, including a sweet spaniel mix with a broken pelvis and our current 8 month old puppy, Meko, who just recovered from a puppy disease and is ready to be adopted.

 

People often tell us how thoughtful it is that we foster and how lucky the dogs are that we take such good care of them, but I think that my roommate and I both know that we’re truly the lucky ones. Nothing brightens your day like the welcome home dance a dog performs for you when you walk in the door, and the fact that we get unconditional puppy kisses while helping the community makes it even better.

 

our foster dog Meko

 

Want to learn more about becoming a foster? Click here for some frequently asked questions!