The Cleveland Browns worked with the Marcus Graham Project (MGP) and the Cleveland Black Sports Professionals to host the Browns Be the Solution: Sports Marketing workshop at FirstEnergy Stadium last week. Thanks to the help of the three groups, in addition to the wonderful volunteers, the event was a huge success.
The four-day workshop gave 21 young professionals the opportunity to put together a comprehensive marketing campaign to advance Browns’ Be the Solution’s social justice efforts. In addition to presenting their ideas to a panel of judges, participants had the opportunity to network with many professionals in the sports industry throughout the week, to get real-time advice for their projects and to expand their professional networks.
The winning group, consisting of Katie Schroeder, Bryce Walker-Ollins, Noah Pena and Taylor Banks, stood out for their exceptional idea and the way they presented it to the Browns organization. Additionally, Joshua Hatch was named Event of the Week MVP and received a trip to Dallas, TX to attend the Marcus Graham Project’s exclusive iCR8 Summer BootCamp.
“It was an amazing experience with the Marcus Graham project and working with the Cleveland Browns. Being in the stadium was an amazing experience and then the workshop in general was great, the panels were amazing. It was so insightful that I I definitely thought I got an incredible amount of information, ”Hatch said of his experience.
None of this would have been possible without the help of seven people who chose to # give10 and who graciously volunteered their time to mentor the young professionals through the process and make the workshop a success. Many of the volunteers are alumni of past MGP workshops and decided that the experience was so valuable to them that they wanted to continue to be part of the experience for the participants after them.
Volunteers included Felicia Jackson (Marketing and Customer Relations Manager, UBIZ Venture Capital), Matthew Denis (Founder, Mo Soul Art & Music Festival), Johnnie benson (MBA candidate, Cleveland State University), Booker Saxx (Head of Social Influence, Washington Wizards), James adams (Graphic designer, Topps Company), Jason garrett (Owner, CoCreative) and Rosi Sanchez (Director of digital and community design, Longaberger).
Felicia Jackson attended the MGP workshop in January 2019 with the Cavaliers and was invited to mentor again last week with the Browns. “Just being in the program as a participant has really helped me, not just with my CV and career, but just to have confidence in my ability to grow and really be in the marketing business,” said Jackson said of her participation in the 2019 workshop. Looking back on last week, Jackson was in awe of her real impact on the attendees. “I didn’t think I would have as much of an impact as I did. A few attendees have contacted me since last week with really long messages, just saying how much they appreciate my presence,” she said. Not only was being a mentor important to the participants, but Jackson also explained that it also taught him a lot. “Even though I’m still starting my career, it just makes me think I have to move differently and appreciate where I am… I can still make an impact and share my experiences with others,” she said.
Thank you to all the volunteers who chose to # give10 and who contributed to the success of the Be the Solution: Sports Marketing workshop! You can also make a difference by joining our Browns First and Ten movement! This initiative was designed to inspire fans across town to give back 10 hours to the community during the year. Since the Browns’ First and Ten movement began in 2014, more than 2.75 million volunteer hours have been pledged. If you want to help give back to your community, take the First and Ten Pledge here, then share your story with us!