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In My Shoes..... The Web Intern

Monday, 24.04.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
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In My Shoes..... The Web Intern

IN MY SHOES...AS THE CANUCKS WEB INTERN

By: Chelsey Perrella
cperrell@sfu.ca
04/21/06

Getting called up to play professional hockey is an opportunity of a lifetime for all rookies, and in a similar way getting the chance to work for the Vancouver Canucks as the website intern was a dream come true for a communication student like myself.

The initial interview for the position was just as unique and exciting as the job itself. I quickly rambled off answers to a few typical interview questions that the website Manager, Michael Kinghorn, asked me and then he apologized, explaining that he had to rush to a press conference, and brought me along.

As we headed into the media conference room, Head Coach, Marc Crawford was standing at the podium talking about the upcoming season and the new player acquisitions while a hive of media swarmed him with every question imaginable.

Crews of camera men snapped what seemed like a hundred photos a minute, and journalists huddled by the speakers capturing quotes on mini recorders that would become a part of tomorrow morning's news story.

I was speechless. It was exciting just to be able to observe the inner workings of the sports entertainment world. Little did I realize that this is what I would be doing on a daily basis as the website intern for the Vancouver Canucks.

As the new student associate, I was in charge of taking photo during the Canucks morning skate and collecting audio clips to be featured on the website. I remember my first week in particular quite clearly; it was training camp for both the players and myself. I made my way down to the visitor's bench and started snapping photos of the team.

It was a little surreal at first being so close to the action since the closest I had ever been to the Canucks was watching them from my tv screen at home from my living room.

After practice, I was given a Sony recorder and told to collect audio clips from the scrums in the Canucks dressing room. I had a swipe pass in order to get into restricted areas but at first, I was unsure as to where I could go and where I couldn't.

As I took a step through the dressing room doorways, I stopped dead in my tracks. A few of the players were walking around in towels and although the room was full of reporters with cameras and audio equipment like myself there was were no female figures in sight. Needless to say, I was a little bit hesitant to just walk right in.

When I finally mustered up the courage, joining the interview scrums was my next challenge. You can imagine how tricky it would be trying to get the microphone remotely close to the players when you're 5'4", with the hustle and bustle of camera men and reporters all trying to edge there way in close. Only when I realized that elbows were a lot more useful then my meek "excuse me's" was I able to wedge myself in closer.

I must admit, at first it was a little intimidating being around people in the industry that were more knowledgeable about hockey then I could ever hope to be. Nevertheless, after listening to the reporters ask questions in the scrums and learning some of the hockey terminology, I became a lot more comfortable and began to throw out my own questions once and awhile.

That's not to say that I didn't have any stressful moments. From not charging the camera batteries before practice, to losing audio clips, I have definitely had my share of mishaps, and learning curves to get through.

My biggest hiccup happened when I organized the "Ask A Player" feature on Trevor Linden. Seeing as I am not especially technologically savvy, I ended up deleting my entire interview with Trevor Linden off of my computer.

I was stuck. I had lost the interview, and had already told the fans on the website that I was going to produce the feature. So I did what any rational intern would do, admitted fault, on the recorder of course, and proceeded to do Trevor's interview again after apologizing to him profusely.

I was lucky that Trevor was such a good sport about the situation.

One of the highlights working for the Canucks was getting the opportunity to write my own article on rookie, Alexandre Burrows during his surprising run when he was first called up to play with the Canucks from the Manitoba Moose. It was a little awkward as I had to call Burrows while he way away on the road in his hotel room.

The interview went really well though since I discovered quickly that Alex was very personable and easy going. The more I talked to the players the more it helped to demystify the Canucks and see them as regular guys, with families and problems just like the rest of us.

If there's one thing that I have learned through my internship it is not to be intimidated by new situations. Through experiencing a few minor blunders, I've realized that since you can't erase your mistakes, it is better to accept your reality and move forward.

Overall, I have enjoyed my time working for the Vancouver Canucks immensely. I have had the opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes in sports broadcasting and have found out first hand what it is like to be a sports reporter. Additionally, I have definitely become more of a hockey fan, but who wouldn't after getting the chance to watch ever single home game.

Being around the players, following the games, and seeing the fans get enthralled by the hype, It would have been hard not to have fun. It's contagious. I feel so very fortunate to have had the chance to experience it for myself.