Tuesday, August 3, 2010

LeBron James Camp

By Danielle Arrington (SMBA '11)

With no professional basketball team in San Diego, the “basketball-heads” of SMBA ’11 got a special treat when the Lebron James’ King’s Academy rolled into UCSD July 29-August 2. Since the beginning of this program, my classmates and I have been excited to the see the operations and logistics of a camp of this caliber, and this experience did not disappoint.

Over the five day skills camp, SMBAers were given numerous opportunities to learn the behind-the-scene workings of a camp of this magnitude. Complete with more than 600 campers, NBA superstars LeBron James and Damon Jones, and powerhouse coaches like Dru Joyce, we truly learned how to work efficiently under pressure. Whether it was manning the camp’s central office, or working directly with camp director Damon Haley, each intern was an integral part of the success of the camp.

In addition to the operational side of the event, we were also able to see how the sponsorship side of the camp worked. With representatives from Nike, Vitamin Water, and Upper Deck, we were given the opportunity to see how these different factions work during an actual event activation.

Overall, during this experience, I think we all started as fans and transformed into sports business managers. The novelty of seeing LeBron James wore off quickly, as we were all more concerned with making the King’s Academy the best experience for every camper and representing the SMBA program with pride.

P.S. It wasn’t all hard work. The SMBA interns were also rewarded with a group picture with LeBron, autographed items, free gear, and nightly basketball games featuring LBJ and college all-stars. Check out some of our pictures.

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