Marketing senior is right at home as intern for PGA Tour
Rising senior Kelly Roy would have been right at home commuting to her summer internship in a golf cart. That’s because the home of the PGA Tour, her summer employer, is little more than a driver and a pitching wedge from her backyard.
The 20-year-old marketing major lives in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., headquarters for the PGA Tour, the organizer of men’s professional golf events in the U.S. and North America. Kelly was one of the 24 interns from around the world that the PGA Tour hired for its internship program this summer.
The PGA Tour employs about 1,000 people with approximately 750 of them in Ponte Vedra Beach at Sawgrass, the golf course which annually hosts one the Tour’s biggest events, The PLAYERS Championship. The interns are dispersed in a variety of departments, including finance, marketing and human resources.
“Growing up with the PGA Tour in my backyard, I always knew about their internship program. It’s a coveted program that is very hands-on where you work with top management on projects,” Kelly said. “Given that I’m interested in a sports marketing or communications career, I feel very fortunate to have this opportunity, and it’s so close to home.”
Kelly credits her involvement with business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi as having enhanced her interview skills. But she points out that it was a family connection that helped get her foot in the PGA Tour headquarters door.
Her father, Tommy Roy, is lead golf producer for NBC Sports and the Golf Channel, and produces 25 events that include network and cable coverage. He’s won 31 Emmy Awards for his behind-the-scenes work as a television sports producer.
“It’s hard to be a member of my family and not be involved with golf. In addition to my father’s career as a sports programming producer, he’s also quite an accomplished golfer. And my grandfather, Billy Roy, was a club professional in Arizona for more than 50 years,” she said.
Kelly’s internship in the PGA Tour’s marketing department centers around fan engagement research that explores ways to attract more fans to the PGA Tour’s web site, social media channels, and tournaments.
“The job is about research and analysis on the Tour’s digital and social media channels. It’s about fan engagement and growing followers who will make use of all the digital channels that are available,” she said.
Kelly said some of her spring semester marketing curriculum at Clemson prepared her for the duties she’s performing as an intern this summer.
“Marketing Metrics and Analytics is a required course that definitely gave me some insights into my work this summer. A lot of what I’m doing on my job is using Excel and analyzing data sets using different tools to make it understandable.
“It’s been an incredible experience. The program here integrates interns into all areas of the business and people here are really interested in helping you learn. Beyond the hands-on work, I go to my supervisor’s meetings, so they really create a team environment for learning,” she said.
Beyond her work functions, it’s the first job where Kelly has experienced a 9-to-5 workday, Monday through Friday.
“I didn’t realize how much goes into a day-to-day job in a very professional environment. There is so much collaboration amongst all the teams throughout the organization. It’s really cool to see how colleagues help one another in a very team-oriented environment.”
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