Democratic National Convention Internship

Remember when Barack Obama was nominated for president? Johnson & Wales University alum Barbara does; she was there, interning at the 2008 DNC.

The best part? Barbara proved she thrived in event management, working crazy hours at Denver's Pepsi Center to make the DNC a success. Before she graduated, she was hired full-time.

Barbara at Pepsi Center, where she coordinates NBA games, concerts, meetings and more

Barbara Young ’10 
From Seattle, Washington

Democratic National Convention

Sports/Entertainment/Event Management


"I Have to Work Here!"
It was love at first sight when Barbara visited Pepsi Center. Roaming the 19,000-seat mega-venue, she imagined working Denver Nuggets games.

Barbara's first look at the Pepsi Center arena, which can seat over 19,000

"One of my earliest memories is singing the Monday night football song with my family,” she says. It was destiny. She thought, “I have to work here."

JWU Professor Opens Door to Internship
Back on campus, she raved about the center to her professor, Stephen Pyle.

"He’s been a phenomenal mentor," Barbara says. Sure enough, he called her before the DNC was even announced.

“I have this internship,” he told her. “Are you interested?”

“Experience of a Lifetime” at the DNC
The next few weeks were the most intense of Barbara’s life. The center was transformed. Media tents filled the lot.

Each day, she raced to meet the DNC’s facility needs. At night, she worked private parties and events for Obama.

Coordinating events in downtown Denver

“I didn’t get too much sleep,” she laughs. “There were some of those nights where you pretty much stayed there, and went home to take a shower!”

"It took us all a couple of hours just to get on property, because each of our cars were individually searched. You thought, 'Oh great, I get to get a few of hours of sleep, I’ll relax.' No!"

Crazy Job, But You Can Do It 
Will you be our next intern at the 2012 DNC, right down the street from our Charlotte Campus? Go for it, Barbara says — it’s definitely worth it!

“I went through it, too,” she laughs. “You’ll make it. You’ll be just fine.”

Make Your Event Career Happen: Barbara's Tips

How do you turn your DNC internship into a career? Ask Barbara: she did it in downtown Denver's events industry. read more