Kara Haase ‘22 Takes on The Grand Slam Externship Program with NESN

Kara Haase ‘22, a Merrimack College Senior majoring in Communications, with a minor in Sports Management and Digital Media Production, completed the Grand Slam Externship Program recently with NESN. Kara previously worked in the Merrimack College Athletics Communications Internship where she created videos and graphics, as well as an internship at Sports Business Networks. Around campus, you can find Kara involved as a volleyball athlete, on a WMCK radio show, on MCTV, writing for the Beacon, on the Athletic Diversity Committee and Lambda Pi Eta, the Communications Honors Society.

Congratulations on your new position. Thank you for meeting with me. Can you tell us a little bit about why you chose to work there? What makes this company a great place to work?

NESN is diverse all across the board. There are so many ways to get in, and a wide range of departments. If you are interested in working in sports, this is an ideal place to be. I grew up watching NESN, and wanted to work there, and my goal has always been to live in Boston, and NESN has a Watertown location which is right next door! The externship was a six week program with hour-long sessions.

How did you find this position, and can you tell us a little bit about what you do there? And is there any advice you’d give to other students looking to break into this company?

My advice for any sports interested students is that NESN is one of the easiest companies to communicate with. We also have alumni working there.  The advertising done by the Merrimack Communications Department was really helpful in getting information about the externship.

I applied, and was selected as one of 35 externs, we met once a week, and attended live sessions on Professional development topics, with a different department hosting every week. These departments included Marketing, PR, Production, and more, and it was a great variety and helped me narrow down what I wanted to do.

Can you talk us through the process of finding and applying for your internship?

I applied via LinkedIn!  I found a flier on my Linkedin feed, which led to the website for the Externship Program. I submitted a Cover letter, resume, and a few questions which were included in my cover letter, as requested by the program.

How did the O’Brien Center help with getting prepared to apply, with the interview or with the job search?

They helped with my resume! They’re advice helped me get my Merrimack College Athletics internship which helped me get the experience to land the externship.

In general, how did Merrimack contribute to your career development? What resources did you use?

I definitely used the O’Brien Center, and learned a lot from my communication classes. Particularly Intro to Communication. l learned how to interview, network, and build my resume.

What surprised you about your internship experience? Were there any situations that came up that you were unprepared for?

If you want a position, keep reaching out to the company. It surprised me just how many people are so competitive. Everyone wants the same job as you, but it’s all about connections, and reaching out to them. In my program, I connected with two women, Hazel and Celeste. I’m now working for Celeste Gehring full time in a Networking group, the Visionary Building Club .

What skills have you developed working for this company and what do you wish you had known prior to starting the externship there?

Ask at least two questions per session! I’ve learned and developed communication skills, communicating over zoom, putting myself out there.  Additionally, working with others, how to network, how to build a resume and career skills are all things my internship helped me  develop and improve on.

Any campus shout-outs to folks who have helped you along the way in getting you to this point?

Definitely Tiffany Begin-Stearns , the production person in the communications department, I’ve taken every single one of her classes.

Speaking of your time at Merrimack, how did you grow in your time here? Were there any influential clubs, jobs, professors, or moments for you?

Interning with Merrimack College athletics was influential for me. I was an athlete myself on the volleyball team! I enjoyed myself so much in the two semesters I worked there, both in person and in zoom.

By Casey Stevenson
Casey Stevenson Communication & Copywriting Intern