More than 108 million viewers tuned into Super Bowl XLVII to watch the 49ers take on the Ravens. A group of local college students had a front row seat for the action in New Orleans.
Fifteen members of the North Central College’s Sports Management Association made the trip to the “Big Easy” to intern with the Super Bowl Host Committee, helping out with many different events.
“We worked the NFL experience over in the convention center,” said sophomore, Alex Russell. “Saturday we worked Super Bowl Boulevard, which is right on the riverwalk along the Mississippi and on Sunday we worked with NFL on location.”
Originally the internship didn’t include a chance to watch the game in person, but after days of hard work that all changed.
“The moment we found out we could get into the Superdome [I] was like a kid in a candy store,” said senior, Kim Ippolito. “It’s that moment you’re never going to forget. We ran in like little kids. We saw the field and our mouths just dropped open.”
“None of us thought we’d even get into the stadium, let alone get to watch the game,” said junior, Jordan Pavlovich. “To get to be in the stadium and feel all that energy, that’s something you just can’t get from [television].”
Though they didn’t have a favorite in the game, that didn’t take away from the atmosphere of watching up close.
“Overall it’s a breathtaking experience,” said junior, Kelsey Stone. “You see it on T.V., but it’s a whole other experience being in the stadium, hearing all the noise. It gave me the chills during the National Anthem with the Sandy Hook kids.”
At the start of the second half, one side of the Superdome lost power for 35 minutes, but these fans weren’t phased.
“I didn’t even think it was that big of a deal,” said senior, Ryan Donahue. “It was just a couple rows of lights. I didn’t think anything of it.”
After the lights came back, the game resumed and the Ravens went on to take the game 34-31. But, what these students took away was the hope that the trip would kick off a new tradition at the college.
North Central was one of ten volunteer school groups to work for the host committee.
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