Published on Brock University (http://www.brocku.ca)
Students, Faculty and Staff welcome key figures from the Blue Jays to Brock
Whether just starting out, or heading down the seventh inning stretch, finding the right motivation to stay on course can be a daunting task for any student during their university career.
Motivation was a common takeaway from “the big league lectures” for Sport Management students on Jan 19.
Two key figures from the Blue Jays organization were able to provide their own unique and equally as motivating stories in front of two packed audiences.
Alex Anthopoulos, Senior Vice-President of Baseball Operations and General Manager, and Andrew Tinnish, Director of Amateur Scouting, for the Toronto Blue Jays, provided students with their own stories, and insight into what it takes to make it in the business of sport.
Shaun Valeroite, Second year sport management student, attended both lectures and commented saying, “Both Andrew and Alex provided very beneficial information and inspiring stories to all students who attended and are examples of the opportunities that can come from perseverance and hard work”.
Alex Anthopoulos talked about his journey to the top, and his humbling beginnings. Working for free as the Montreal Expos “fan mail guy”, Alex set out to be the best fan mail guy the organization had ever seen. In doing so he provided himself with opportunities to advance in the organization and gain the experience he needed to take the next steps in his career.
His advice to students was to “take chances while you are young and find a career you are passionate about, if they say they don’t have the money to pay you, then work for free, and do the best at it”.
As mentioned in the lecture there were a lot of bumps along the road, but at the end of that road was a GM position for Anthopoulos. Knowing his story really put things in perspective for students, and gave them the needed confidence to dream big. Tyler Harrison, commented on the presentations saying that they were, “a great motivation to anybody who attended— It shows that anyone can make it once they get their foot in the door”.
Andrew Tinnish is a Brock sport management graduate (95-99), coming from the same program, students were able to identify with him, and better understand the necessary steps after graduation.
“Being able to sit in on guest lectures from prominent members of the industry is something that for me as a Sport Management student is irreplaceable." Said Jared Wall, fourth year SPMA student, he continued saying, "it is extremely valuable to be able to learn from experiences of individuals whose advice can really help shape my decisions about what steps to take for my career development. You never know how much of an influence the words of guest speakers like today's (Alex and Andrew) can have on a student."
Andrew was able to speak about his current role as Director of amateur scouting with the blue jays and engage students with the steps he took to get there after graduation. Speaking from experience he was able to offer valuable advice to those in attendance, Tinnish commented on the program saying, “the SPMA program was a crucial component in my development as a professional. Its an extremely valuable program for anyone pursuing a career in sports”.
Many students showed up as fans foremost, and students secondly, but walked away with a learning experience that was both inspiring and motivational.
Find out more from the Brock News 
Find out more about Andrew's story from The Standard 
Find out more about Alex's story from The Standard