From Thunder Bay to NBA, Mitchell Thompson made sure to make a big impact at Brock University in between the two.
Mitchell Thompson was born and raised in Thunder Bay where he attended Lakehead University, graduating in 2014 with a B.A. in Political Science. Upon graduation, Thompson realized that he wanted to pursue a career in the world of sports. That’s when Thompson decided to attend Brock’s Sport Management program to acquire another degree.
Having completed four years at Lakehead and obtaining transferable credits, Thompson was able to complete the Sport Management program in a reduced time of two years.
“It was my first time at Brock University and I quickly began to love the people and the culture around me,” said Thompson.
Coming into Brock, Thompson dove head first into the Brock community and became a don for the Department of Residence; Thompson therefore became a mentor for over seventy students in his residence. As a don, Thompson helped students feel safe and secure away from home for the first time while also providing them with the proper resources and advice to succeed at Brock. For example, during one of his meetings with his students, Thompson helped set up LinkedIn profiles and explained the importance of having a professional online appearance.
“Working for the Department of Residence allowed me to gain people skills through the wide range of interactions with people from various departments and programs,” said Thompson.
As Thompson settled into his role as a don, his studies in Sport Management had also begun and it was time management and determination that helped him excel.
Regarding Brock’s Sport Management program, Thompson said that “[the program] prepared me for having strong knowledge of the sports industry,” he added that “the classes that helped me out particularly were “Sport Sponsorship”, and “Negotiations in Sport.”
Being closer to Toronto than ever before, Thompson took the opportunity to further advance his experiences by becoming a delegate for the 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games Youth Summit.
“I was involved in a community activation, and learned how I can create an impact in our local communities through sport,” said Thompson.
Occupations in sports can range anywhere from physiotherapist to radio broadcaster. When questioned if Thompson had an idea of what he would like to do after completing his degree with Brock, he said that he knew that he wanted to work in marketing and sales due to his previous experiences. Thompson had worked for the Pepsi Taste Challenge as a Brand Ambassador and Field Supervisor, and for a Franks Red Hot Sauce campaign where he conducted activations at various large events as a Brand Ambassador.
Thompson’s dream to work marketing within sports turned into a reality soon after he travelled to Louisiana State University on an academic exchange offered by Brock.
“I found myself able to work in collegiate sports in the event management department.” said Thompson.
While on exchange, Thompson had a lot of time to prepare for his internship. After many emails and interviews, Thompson landed an incredible opportunity interning for the Phoenix Suns in their Sales Department as a Ticket and Service Intern. Upon completion of his internship, Thompson was offered a full-time job with the Department as a Sales Consultant selling ticket packages for the Phoenix Suns, the Phoenix Mercury (WNBA) and the Arizona Rattlers (AFL).
Having recently submitted his final internship report, Thompson is officially a Brock graduate, one whose story is a great example of where hard work, dedication and the support of a strong university can get students.
Thompson’s future goals and aspirations include working in Las Vegas for the upcoming NHL team that is yet to be officially named, or working for his favourite NFL team, the Minnesota Vikings.
“One of my favourite quotes that I try to embrace is ‘one day you’ll leave this world behind, so live a life you will remember,’” said Thompson.
***Alena Kondratieva worked for the Brock University Department of Residence during the 2015/2016 academic year.