The National Soccer Coaches Association of America is the by klutzfu55


									                                                                  Five week Report: Vyas      1

         The National Soccer Coaches Association of America is the largest coaching
organization in America. This organization is broken down in to three primary sectors in
the national office; the departments are Membership, Marketing, and Education. Even
though I have been here as an intern for 7 weeks, I have only been working for the
education department for 5 weeks. Before starting my internship with the education
department I was primarily working with Chris Burt the Marketing department. My
internship report will encompass the entire experience I have had over my seven weeks
here in Kansas City. I will be discussing the two weeks prior to starting my internship
with Doug Williamson, Allison Pronske, and the education department; I then will be
primarily discussing my day to day duties of working with the education department.
Also I will be reporting on my progress towards my internship goals, as well as, evaluate
my personal performance as an intern at the NSCAA National (National Soccer Coaches
Association of America) Office.
         As we had discussed I was able to take an internship with the NSCAA education
department. The primary goal of our organization is to educate coaches; we believe that
coaches educate players, we educate coaches. However before working for this
department I was asked to work with Chris Burt and the Marketing department to help
the organization with the NSCAA Convention. Working with Chris for these two weeks
has given me a brief introduction on how the business side of the organization works.
         The night before my first day I still remember ironing my navy blue dress suit
with my black pinstriped trousers. I called the font desk from my motel room that I am
living out of to ask for a wake up for 7 a.m. The motel room is not the best place to live,
and it is in not the best area of Kansas City, Missouri; however I laid in the bed
anticipating my first day at the NSCAA. I probability got 4 hours of sleep that night; I felt
like a freshmen in high school all over again waiting on my first day of school. I was
awakened by the draft of cold air leaking in the door, and I could hear the heater rattling
at 6:55 in the morning. I just stared at the neon green numbers waiting to hear that ring
singling it was time to get up. 7.00, the phone rang I was up in the warm shower, having
a clean shave, brushing/ flossing my teeth, all quick and efficient. Determined to break
my cycle of tardiness, I inhaled my breakfast, Coco Pebbles with cold whole milk, and
spike my hair with gel. By now the clock on the CNN ticker read 7:45 and I was off to
my first day as an intern. After glancing over the Mapquest directions I had memorized
the night before, I drove downtown to the national office and to my surprise I arrived
thirty five minuets early. Not only was I the first intern at the office, I was the first one in
the parking lot. As I sat in my car I pulled my book out of my backpack, “Dreams from
My Father”, it was given to my as a Christmas gift. As the parking lot started to fill up I
decided to enter through the front doors, and Kay Baker (the secretary) greeted me with a
kind hello. After making small talk for a few minuets I sat in the lobby waiting for Chris
Burt to come and greet me. He informed me that I was early and the other interns would
be arriving shortly. The first intern I had met was Jared Tettun, was a football player at
Washburn University. He seemed a little stand offish and was not eager to make any sort
of conversation. Next I met Daniel Perez, and Derek Keller whom were interns in the fall,
and were hired on fulltime to help work the 2009 Convention in St. Louis. My first
assignment was to proofread a convention media guide, and make a list of suggestions.
However, as I read though the media guide over and over, I could find nothing wrong. It
looked fine to me and I immediately regretted missing class on the day we discussed
                                                              Five week Report: Vyas     2

media guides in Dr. Sawyer’s class. Jared also had the same assignment, and we looked
at each other in agreement that the document was excellent. We both walked in to Chris’s
office informing him that he document was fine, and he just said, “Ok, go help Daniel
and Derek.” It almost seemed like a test, because the media guide was printed that next
day. For the rest of the day we learned about the 2009 NSCAA Convention in St. Louis;
as well as, started stuffing the introduction packets, all 3000 of them. The NSCAA
Convention is the known as the Largest Annual Gathering of Soccer Coaches in the
World. In our organization we have roughly 26,000 members and a majority of them are
coaches. For the rest of that first week we worked on stuffing all the information packets,
I noticed it was a complete team effort by the entre office and it took the full week.
Friday, Chris took us out to lunch and gave us a briefing of what our responsibilities
entailed. The NSCAA rented a car for us and we were required to get to work Sunday
(1/11) to load up the semi-trucks before driving to St. Louis.
        I had made plans with Daniel Perez, a co-worker who I have developed a
friendship with; to leave my car at his house and we would drive one car to the National
Office. Sadly I got lost on my way to his place and by the time we arrived at the office
the group had already loaded 100 or so boxes. Lucky for us we had 700 more boxes that
needed to be loaded. It was strenuous physical labor; however I realized I was there
work, not just to play around. There was another high school coach, Chad, who was
helping us move boxes. As we got to talking I found out that he was a referee also, and
that he we discussed different philosophies as far as refereeing on the pitch. I could tell
he was impressed with my knowledge of the game and since then has proven to be a
valuable person to put in my list of networks. Chris rented us an SUV, and we went to
lunch in Kansas City before driving out to St. Louis. It was a brand new white Buck, fully
loaded, and it even had the new car smell. The drive to St. Louis took about four hours
however, it was the best for hours for our team of interns because it gave us time to bond
as well as, gave us and opportunity to learn a little about each other. We arrived at St.
Louis at 4:30 p.m. and there was confusion because the hotel we were supposed to be
staying at was changed and we were not notified. We finally found our rooms at the
Renaissance across from the America Convention Center in St. Louis. Hotel was
exquisite; the beds were plush, the showers were enormous, and the view was stunning.
Jared was my roommate, and we both unpacked and relaxed for a few hours before
getting ready for dinner at Jake’s Stakes. We met all the board members in the lobby and
I was able to meet with Geoff Van dusen, the University of Indianapolis Women’s Coach
who help me acquire this internship. At the dinner I was grateful for having taken the
Etiquette Dinner Class, because I was seated next to Al Albert who was the President of
the NSCAA. I was able to talk to him not only about his job, but the nuisances of the
sport of soccer. It was an unreal experience, and I found myself one point in the meal
feeling overwhelmed with pride that I was sitting at a table the executives from the
NSCAA, who would have ever guess. Following the dinner we were invited to go up to
one of the coach’s room’s to have a drink, however I was drained so I went back to my
room and went to bed. The next morning we were up and at the Convention Center at
8:00 a.m. Jared and I walked across the street, and met Chris as well as other members
from the office and we were given a tour around the facility and unloaded boxes of the
Semi-Truck. With the help of other NSCAA volunteers we had to sort the different boxes
and deliver them to their designated area. All of Monday consisted of manual labor;
                                                              Five week Report: Vyas    3

however we were invited to go to lunch with a select group of College Coaches from
Missouri and Kansas. Chad knew most of the coaches so I tagged along with him while
he introduced me to the college coaches. Monday was the longest day because Chris’s
primary responsibility is to run the Exhibit Hall. Our Convention is the largest soccer
convention in the nation, and we had over 270 individual exhibitors. Chris delegated to us
to get their information packets ready. Again this was more manual labor, and it was a
mind numbing process. However, I learned a very important lesson; many times in the
field unexciting duties are required to be carried, and not everything can be fun and
games. We were scheduled to work until 5 p.m.; yet, we did not get done stuffing packets
until nine or ten at night. Following the long day Chris bought us dinner at a hotel bar,
and it was terrible food, later on that night I threw up with what I think was food
poisoning. After dinner we were allowed to go up to Van Duesin’s suite to relax with
other NSCAA Members. This Suite would prove to be a valuable networking place which
I would take advantage later on in the week. After going to the suite Jared and I walked
back to get a good night sleep. Tuesday is when the fun started, Chris was required to be
in meetings all day, and we had our major partners (adidas, Gatorade, and Kwik Goal) as
well as other large exhibitors coming to set up their booths. There were a lot of minor
issues, however because Chris was in meetings all day we were forced to make decisions
and handle hostile situations. The day was difficult to get though; however, it was a
blessing in disguise because it forced us to use problem solving skills. The way we
handled situations, were we ran two lines and because my strength was in
communication, I would address the exhibitor, and Derek would look to solve the
problem. Because I am a soccer official getting yelled at doesn’t phase me, so if nothing
could be done I would get yelled at; then I would take their number down and put it on
Chris’s laptop so he could address the problem when he came back. After working at the
Exhibitor Registration booth all day, we were required to a NSCAA Convention
Committee meeting. At that meeting I really got a sense how large our convention was,
there were about 20 representatives raining from Joe Miller of Champion Services, to
every aspect of running the largest soccer convention in the country. At the meeting, like
all the meeting we are required to go to, we were seen and not heard. Again that night we
were invited to Coach Van Dusen’s Suite. Again I used this opportunity to network with
a great many of people that significant in the soccer community. We called it an early
night, because convention started on Wednesday, so we needed plenty of rest.
        Wednesday January 14, convention officially starts. Once again we were required
to work the Exhibitor Registration booth from 8 a.m.-9p.m. Working the booth all day
was exhausting we were required to greet each individual representative from each
exhibit, walk them though their packet of information, and direct them to their booth.
Nonetheless the networking opportunity was more that I could have even imagined in my
wildest dreams. I meet people such as Ernesto Bruce, Jason Davis and other sport
marking managers from adidas, as well as, the entire Eurosport staff, and many other
prestigious exhibitors from that work on soccer products on an international level. My
greatest memory was form a fellow named Shane McIntyre, who was with the Scottish
F.A. He had a situation in which he packet of information was not ready, and he did not
have all his credentials. Instead of sending him off, I was very professional in
accommodating him. Apparently he I made a such good impression, at the end of the
evening he came and gave me Scottish Football Association blue polo. After the long
                                                                   Five week Report: Vyas       4

day we were required to get dress up for the Presidents Reception in the Renaissance
Crystal Ballroom. Every night we were required to attend one of these high function
receptions. Most of the other inters just sat in the back and drank the free beer; however I
made a valiant effort to go around and introduce myself to a few people at every function.
These receptions usually lasted until twelve thirty or one in the morning, and Chris asked
us to be at the booth the next morning at seven in the morning.
         Seven o’clock struck and I came dragging in with a large coffee in one hand and a
cheese Danish in the other, I was too fatigued beyond all measure. But once again we
worked the registration booth from 8.00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. The best part about Thursday
was I was able to network with Neal Shah of the MLS. Neal’s family was from the same
city that my uncle in India, it gave me an opening to create dialect. Neal was at the
convention because we were hosting the MSL SuperDraft. I had a chance to have a great
conversation with him about his background, and his goals, and his education. He
informed me about how he works at the MLS executive offices in Partnership Marketing
and Business Development. The more I spoke with him the more I realize that this job
would be my dream job. Working in Fan Development, and with all the teams would be
amazing, he also informed me that if I got back and get a graduate degree that I would be
eligible to apply for the MLS internship, which is something that I would love to do. I
was also able to attend the SuperDraft behind the scenes. It was really interesting to see
how chaotic it was in the pit. At seven we opened the Exhibit Hall, which the kick off to
convention. It was great, because I was able to meet with Indianapolis coaches whom I
work with in Indy, including my High School Coach; the look on their face was priceless
when I would walk up in full uniform with my name badge on. Even the coaches that
hate me were in awe. That night we were required to attend the Exhibitors reception; as
all the other interns were sitting in the back drinking free beer once again, I sat at a table
of strangers. Everyone I sat with were exhibitors and some of the people I sat with were
fresh out of college working for their first company. Being able to network with the
exhibitors was great because it helped me to alleviate tensions on the exhibit floor for
later throughout the weekend.
         It seemed like the entire weekend flew by, Friday we were in charge of handling
the silent auction, as well as working the exhibitor registration booth. Since most of the
exhibitors were there we mainly answered questions all day. I was able to observe how
Daniel Perez used his contact to get an offer to Brine (the soccer ball company) to get an
offer to work in their marketing department. Also I was asked to work the US Youth
Scan card Booth which was great because I was able to see almost every person that
came to the convention on Saturday; at the booth we were giving out free prizes on behalf
of US Youth Soccer. I was also able to network with members from the Youth Soccer
Organization. That night we were required to attend the NSCAA Awards Banquet. It was
textbook etiquette dinner. I really feel that the class I took in the fall paid for itself in that
one setting. I felt others at my table noticed that I was the only intern that knew how to
use which silverware, and how to conduct myself. That night I went to go visit my old
high school coach (Sean Bray, Marion College Men’s Coach), and visit with Indiana
group of coaches. By far this was one of my best decisions not to just go visit bars with
the interns. I was able to converse with in a social setting, and it strengthened my
reputation in the Indianapolis soccer community.
                                                               Five week Report: Vyas     5

         Saturday was almost a blur, we were forced to be at the registration booth at 7:30,
and it was very difficult to get though that day. Everyone was tired and irritable. At one
point we had to throw some exhibitors for repeatedly breaking the rules. Lucky we were
so ill-tempered at that point; we were done being polite and we just booted them out of
the hall; no questions asked. That night in Van Dusen’s suite I was able to use my
networking ability, I realized by just introducing myself and making casual conversation,
one can greatly improve their networks. Sunday, was finally the last day and we were
required to tear down the entire booth area, however luckily for us we had the St. Louis
Union there to take everything apart. After a quick lunch we got on the road and headed
back to Kansas City. Home At last. Overall the NSCAA convention was the best
experience I had ever had in my entire college career; I met some amazing people worked
with some amazing coaches, and learned a lot. Following convention, Chris Burt gave us
a few days off; I took advantage of my little vacation by driving 7 hours to Indianapolis,
kind of to recharge the batteries. The next week I was finishing up the silent auction
forms and getting ready to start my internship the education department of the NSCAA.
         Education is the cornerstone of the NSCAA; we have state and regional
representatives, who teach coaching courses all around the country. We have the country
in broken down in to 12 regions in which we host Residential and non-residential
courses. Our courses start from the parent-coach diploma, the most basic coaching class,
to the Master-Coach classes which are for Division 1 and Professional coaches. So far I
have been working with Jeff Tipping (The director of Coaching Education) to come up
with an Aggressive Marking Strategy to improve member ship and save money. Another
side project is typing our course curriculums for each course in an HTML document; I
am doing this so we are able to post our course curriculums online. I have also learned to
fully use iMIS, our member database, to look up and contact with all of our 26,000
members. Also I have had the opportunity to sit in on various education meetings, and
conference call that the department has with the board members; just by listings I am
learning how I would handle myself when I start conducting conference calls.
 Furthermore, I have been uploading courses on our website for members to sign-up for;
and I am also working for the education department printing and shipping diplomas out to
other coaches. Allison Pronske is my direct supervisor on daily tasks; however she is
expecting her third child in April so I will just have to roll with the wind. It seems like
every day I come in to work learning something new; or being able to apply classroom
assignments to the real world.
         While working at the NSCAA I truly believe I have made progress working
towards my goals; recently I was asked to referee an MLS Kansas City Wizards
Preseason game. This amazing opportunity was one of my goals for coming out for this
internship. Even though Dr. Bodey did not see the relevance in this goal; in my field it is
all about creditability, and being able to say that I have been to “The Show” on “The
Pitch” with the “Big Boys” gives me all the creditability on a whole different level. Also
I am learning how to work in an office setting, and I am learning first hand about office
politics- My plan is to stay under the radar of and out of office politics.
                                                                 Five week Report: Vyas      6

         If I were to evaluate my self I would give my self 4 out of 5 stars. I say four stars
because, I have not missed a single day, I have only been late one day, and I push myself
to work harder than the other interns. Most of the other interns only work 3 days a weeks
(to fulfill a 300 hour requirement), I push my self 9-5 five days a weeks, plus I am
working at JC Penney’s at nights. I will soon start officiating soccer, and my plan to
increase my networks though officiating doing the best job I can. I do believe I can
improve, however I am trying to work hard everyday, and I plan to continue to push
myself to the limit, so when I leave I will have absorbed everything I can learn from the
National Soccer Coaches Assoc. of America.

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