Rice Sport Management major Ashten Ackerman ‘11 is feeling right at home in her new position as Aquatics Director of the YMCA of Central Florida.
Ackerman oversees two YMCA’s with five different pools and has a variety of tasks to complete each day. These tasks range from hiring and interviewing new staff, planning promotional events and even swim team rebranding. Not only is she handling the office work but Ackerman can also be found teaching private swim lessons, interacting with members and giving tours of the facilities.
“I looked at this job as not only an opportunity to come back closer to home, but as an opportunity to get my MBA, gain much needed supervisory experience and give back to the program and sport that have given me so much.” Ackerman said.
Taking on a variety of tasks in familiar territory for the Florida native. She swam for the Rice Owls and was a big contributor to the Conference USA championship team in 2011. While putting in countless hours at the pool during her years at Rice, she also managed to immerse herself numerous internships including work with Rice Athletics, the Houston Texans, the University of Florida, and the NCAA Final Four. She was even the Vice President of the Rice University Sport Business Alliance (RUSBA) and a student Ambassador for the University.
She attributes her success at her current position to the Rice Sport Management program and encourages others to focus on their relationships with employers.
“By maintaining my contacts back at the Y, it was a very easy transition back in,” Ashten said, “…thank goodness for networking!”
Alison Godbe, a senior from Mission Viejo, California, is majoring in Psychology and minoring in Business.