Designing for a Dream Internship
Senior marketing and graphic design major Caitlin Wienck (’14) landed the internship of a lifetime. This spring Caitlin is designing for the Kansas City Chiefs.
While researching for graphic design and marketing internships in the Kansas City area, Caitlin, who is from Topeka, Kan., found a graphic design internship advertised with the Kansas City Chiefs. She applied online by submitting her resume and answering a few questions. A few days later, she received an email asking her to continue the application process by redesigning the team’s Red Friday logo and another logo of her choice. Excited by the opportunity and her love for design, Caitlin got to work.
After submitting her designs, Caitlin was chosen for an interview. Not long after the interview she received an offer and started her internship in October 2013.
Throughout one of the winningest seasons in several years, Caitlin gained experiences outside the design world. She worked at several games escorting VIPs to the field during pregame activities and giving radio broadcast tours at Arrowhead stadium during games. She also had the opportunity to watch the games from the end zones.
“It was cool because I was really close to the players,” Caitlin commented.
Now that it is off-season, Caitlin spends all her time in the Chief’s office with design and marketing projects.
“Sometimes its graphic design and other times it is copywriting [tweaking and rewording] articles,” Caitlin said.
Every day, Caitlin meets with her supervisor to discuss progress on her projects. Caitlin has designed the medals for the 5k “Finish on the 50” race, which is the Chiefs’ annual run/walk where the participants finish the race on the 50 yard line at Arrowhead Stadium. Caitlin has also designed the Mini Chief to Work Day emails and posters, which is when Chiefs employees bring their children to work with them. Not only has Caitlin designed posters and medals for events, she has also designed several of the backgrounds for the website. She also works on Arrowhead event signage and posters. Currently she’s designing the team’s Kid’s Club birthday postcard and email, as well as items for the Kid Club Sports Lab.
One of her most memorable experiences was attending the Chiefs Holiday party with the players and their families.
“I was standing right next to Jamaal Charles,” recalled Caitlin. “We can’t talk to the players, unless they talk to us first, so I was only able to look at him. He was a lot shorter than he looks on TV!”
Another memorable experience was when a vice president approached Caitlin to tell her that she did a great job with the Mini Chief to Work Day promotion.
“It was reaffirming when he complimented me,” said Caitlin. “This internship is exactly like something I want to do for the rest of my life, so it was great hearing that I am doing a good job.”
Caitlin brought a lot of talent to her internship. She says she has gained essential graphic design experience while at MNU which formed the bulk of her design portfolio helping her land the Chiefs internship. As Associated Student Government publicity director for two years, an MNU marketing office design intern and through freelance design work Caitlin has honed her skills.
“From the start, Caitlin has been a dedicated artist,” said Graphic Design professor, Brian Merriman. “She came into the program knowing what she wanted to do and had the talent to make those dreams a reality. She puts a lot of time into studying and learning, whether it’s technical information or looking at other artists. Her dedication and talent makes for an exceptional artist.”
“I learned a lot about branding while working with MNU’s marketing department,” Caitlin said. “The Chiefs brand is very complicated, so my prior experience has helped me in developing an understanding of something so complex.”
Caitlin’s supervisor at Arrowhead, has also commented about how quickly she can complete projects. Caitlin said she developed her speedy skillset by completing a lot of projects the past few years at MNU.
Caitlin says working for the Chiefs is a great experience. Not only is she developing more graphic design and marketing skills, she is also gaining first-hand experience in the corporate world.
“It is a totally different dynamic being in the corporate world,” said Caitlin. “I am enjoying this opportunity and am excited to see what else I will learn as the semester continues.”