Women's track & field's Temi Ogunrinde is making the most out of her summer as she's interning with the 2019 NCAA Final Four Minneapolis Local Organizing Committee (MLOC). Learning of the position from Linda Roberts, University of Minnesota's Director of Campus & Community Partnerships, Ogunrinde works on various projects throughout the internship. The MLOC is in the midst of a 28-month planning process. Along with the NCAA championship and semifinal games, the MLOC also is preparing for a music festival, a fan fest as well as other events and activities throughout the year leading up to the event to engage youth, promote student athletic competition and build excitement throughout the host region. Read about Ogunrinde's experience here.
Gophersports: What's a typical day for you with the MLOC?
Temi Ogunrinde: It depends on the day. I work from 10-2:30, Monday through Friday downtown at US Bank Plaza and work on various projects. Some days I have meetings with city council members or many of the amazing people who are helping bring the Final Four to life here in Minneapolis.
GS: What are some of the tasks you have been given to aide the planning committee?
TO: My biggest project focuses on community engagement and outreach. I conduct research on the neighborhoods in Minneapolis, the demographic, schools and events in those areas. Then I met with many of the city council members to get better insight on how the Final Four can best be involved with the community in order to make this event one that they can enjoy and benefit from whether that be job or volunteer opportunities, health and wellness events, or other fun events that the community can enjoy. From there, I have helped create a "road map" to help my bosses best navigate the city of Minneapolis and how they can make a presence in the community.
GS: What is the biggest thing you'll take away from this experience?
TO: The importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Being African American, I have now really learned and placed high value on this in the work force. Working for Kate Mortenson and the Final Four Host Committee has been an amazing opportunity to see such a diverse workforce in action and to be a part of that. But also to feel included and appreciated for my culture and who I am has made this internship amazing and has set a high standard for future working environments.
GS: What are your career goals and how did this internship help in that path?
TO: Being a nonprofit major, I definitely wanted to learn and gain more experience in such a setting and this internship has given me that. Not just working for this specific nonprofit but also the job shadowing and mentorship I have received from this internship. I have seen different foundations such as the Pohlad Family Foundation and the Bush Foundation and it has been amazing. It has gotten me very excited to work in this field and also helped me establish important networks to set me up for success.
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