2015 was a year that really fostered my development as a young professional in the entertainment and venue industry. I did two event internships, one in Sydney, Australia, for a company called Business Chicks and another through Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks. Fortunately, 2015 was also the year when I got involved with the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM). Being a student in my senior year, it was hands down the best decision I made for my career and future in the industry.
I attended and interned at two conferences, VenueConnect in Baltimore, Maryland, and the International Convention Center Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. The IAVM Foundation helped me fund these learning experiences and gave me the opportunity to network with industry leaders through the Joseph A. Floreano Scholarship + Internship Program. I made connections and developed relationships that were essential to my growth and success. The people of IAVM were not only supportive but eager to build up young leaders and were always there to lend a hand. Many doors have opened through being a student intern at these conferences. Additionally, the industry knowledge I attained through these conferences is astonishing. Being able to participate in discussions and attend cutting-edge sessions on current trends helped me understand the industry in a whole new light.
I have since graduated from Missouri State with an entertainment management degree and moved to Nashville, Tennessee, to pursue a career. With the help of the people I met through IAVM, I am more than ecstatic to say that I got a job as the events and talent coordinator at the Grand Ole Opry House. I owe a lot to the IAVM Foundation for helping me achieve my goals to be able to work with a company I admire so much doing exactly what I am most passionate about. I could easily say that I got my dream job, and I am so excited for what the future holds and send my greatest gratitude to this organization.