Most Important Lesson Learned in 2013

By Sarah Kirkwood
Image courtesy of marin/

Image courtesy of marin/

The past twelve months have been a never-ending whirlwind of change.  I began the year as a college student and ended it two days short of the conclusion of the best internship I could ever ask for.

2013 was an incredible year.  I truly believe the reason I enjoyed it so much was because, with the full support of my family, I was able to follow my dreams.

I had a lot going for me leading up to my graduation from the University of Florida in May—I  was set to graduate Summa Cum Laude,  had two internships under my belt and had developed a decent amount of networking.  Although I did not have a job lined up prior to graduation, I remained optimistic about one potential opportunity- an internship with the Gator Bowl Association.

At the time, I knew I wanted to work in sports.  Almost any sport would do, but the prospect of working in college football was too good to be true.  I had a great interview and was very hopeful about getting the job.  However, I couldn’t stop making applications elsewhere…just in case.

I had several irons in the fire, including two full-time jobs, when I got the call and offer of the internship.  Faced with one of the biggest decisions of my life, I immediately started a pro/con list.  It included location, salary, roles and responsibilities, opportunities to learn, growth potential, etc.

In the end, my passion for sports won out.  My time at the Gator Bowl Association exceeded all of my expectations, and it proved to be a tremendous educational experience.  I thought I knew a lot about sports, but I learned so much more.  The most important lesson learned, however, is to follow my heart and my dreams to build a career to love.



sarah-kirkwoodAbout the Author
Sarah Kirkwood was born and raised in Jacksonville and considers herself to be a true beach girl.  This soon-to-be Gator grad is finishing up her degree in public relations and is excited about the opportunities that await her after graduation.  A life-long love of sports and a first hand knowledge of how teams can positively impact a community has inspired her to seek a career in the sports field.