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#NACMAYP of the Month (February 2019) - Rachel Palmer

By Chris Grosse posted 03-08-2019 15:18


Name: Rachel Palmer

Current Position: Marketing Assistant – University of Maryland

Number of Years in Current Position: 1

Conference: Big Ten

Alma Mater(s): BA University of Virginia 2017; MS Commerce University of Virginia 2018

Twitter Handle: @rachelpalmer_

LinkedIn Address:


When/why did you decide to pursue a career in college athletics?

I’ve always had an interest in working in sports, but entered college with the intent to work in politics. After feeling unfulfilled by politics internships, I decided to go back to my original passion and pick up an internship with Virginia Sports Marketing during my second year of college. I never looked back after the first football game I worked. The noise, the fandom, the excitement of putting on a show for thousands of people… I had never experienced anything like it and knew I never wanted to lose that feeling.

What is one thing that has surprised you about working in this profession?

The amount of pizza I’d eat… but honestly, how much fun I could have at work every single day.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

 “Feel the fear and do it anyway.”

Who is your role model in this industry and why?

I’m going to list two. First, Kevin Thurman, Assistant Director of Marketing at Virginia. I’ve never seen someone take on so many responsibilities at once and master them all. His work ethic and joy are infectious and he’s taught me how to lead with confidence and compassion. I genuinely would not be where I am today without the opportunities he’s given me and the countless hours he’s spent letting me pick his brain.

Even though we’ve only worked together for less than a year, I really look up to Kendall Farrell, Associate Director of Marketing at Maryland. I’ve never learned so much from someone in such a short period of time. She attacks every task and is always looking for ways to do things more efficiently and effectively. Kendall has been an incredible supervisor to me and I can’t wait to be that person for someone else someday.

What are your career aspirations?

As long as I’m working in marketing and creating positive, memorable experiences for fans… I’ll be happy.

What has been your most memorable moment on the job?

When I was a GA at Virginia, I got to cover College GameDay on our social channels. From the day prior when the bus arrived and students began camping out until the next day when one student hit a half court shot, I got to be there for it all. We get to see cool things on the job every single day, but few things have impressed me as much as the production of College GameDay. The best part? Getting to be in a commercial with Rece Davis for Travelocity!

Share one funny moment or story from game day.

We all joke about “other duties as assigned,” but it truly comes to life during women’s basketball season. During Maryland Women’s Basketball 2nd Annual “Price is Right” game, we had our own version of Bob Barker/Drew Carey, but no assistant on the court. Enter me: holding a giant check at midcourt and flipping over cards on a table on camera. I now have a lot of awkward pictures of me, but I also may have found a back-up job if this sports marketing thing falls through…

If you weren’t working in college athletics, what would you be doing?

I would be working in marketing analytics or brand management for an agency or corporate organization.

Supervisor quote on YP of the Month:

We couldn't be more thrilled that Rachel has received NACMA YP of the Month! During her time here, she has built incredible relationships within our athletic department and I think everyone she interacts with would say she is very deserving of this recognition! She continues to step up every chance she gets and is such an asset to our marketing team. We are so proud of her and happy we get to work with her everyday! - Kendall Farrell - Associate Director of Marketing Strategy and Fan Experience, University of Maryland.