One UT student will embark on the internship of a lifetime this February to participate in a program with NBC at the upcoming winter Olympics in Vancouver.
For almost an entire month UT junior Andrew Topel will be acting as a hospitality guide, catering to the needs of multiple waves of NBC guests invited to attend the games.
He will be instrumental in such things as giving tours, escorting honored guests and helping set up various promotional events for the broadcast station.
Although Topel has engaged in entertainment internships in the past, this will be by far his most exciting and prestigious.
He was exposed to this unparalleled opportunity this past summer while participating in an internship placement program in New York known as University of Dreams.
It was while staying here that a roommate told Topel of his own internship experience at the Salt Lake City winter Olympics of 2002.
Only a few days later, Topel and a close friend found themselves on a train into the city on their way to interview with NBC.
Soon after, both were informed of their acceptance into the program.
Topel expressed deep gratitude for the internship placement program he believed helped facilitate his involvement with NBC.
He is currently working with University of Dreams in an attempt to afford future students similar opportunities.
“Anyone and everyone should look into this program,” he said.
Though Topel is excited for the opportunity that awaits, he is, perhaps, the first to admit that this internship will be far from a free ride.
“They told me I’ll be working seven days a week, up to 12 hour shifts a day,” he said.
“Basically I won’t know what they need me to do each day until the night before.”
In addition to working overtime, Topel is further expected to keep up with his studies back at UT in order to maintain full-time student status.
Although Topel will be traveling to Vancouver unattended by UT professors or fellow students, he has the full backing and support of the communications department lead by Dr. Timothy Kennedy.
It is with their guidance that he hopes to maintain his status as a full-time student throughout the month-long internship.
“Dr. Kennedy told me to anticipate my second semester schedule before it’s even finalized,” Topel said.
“I can discuss the internship in advance with my teachers and maybe keep up through certain online resources.”
Despite the mountain of work Topel is expecting to confront during and after Vancouver, he remains optimistic that some of his time will be spent viewing the games themselves.
After the conclusion of the internship, he plans on returning to UT and finishing off the rest of the semester.
“I truly believe this will be one of those experiences I’ll remember for the rest of my life,” he said.
Enriched by the lessons afforded him by his multiple internships, Topel plans on pursuing a career in entertainment upon graduation.
“Ideally, I’d want to be a talent agent for the entertainment industry, involved with casting,” he said.