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LHU News

Lock Haven University represented at Super Bowl LV

From left, are Nick Long and Dr. James Mattern, LHU sport studies assistant professor, at Super Bowl LV. The two 2014 LHU graduates volunteered at the big game as part of the Tampa Bay Super Bowl LV Host Committee.

From left, are Nick Long and Dr. James Mattern, LHU sport studies assistant professor, at Super Bowl LV. The two 2014 LHU graduates volunteered at the big game as part of the Tampa Bay Super Bowl LV Host Committee. 

Dr. James Mattern, sport studies assistant professor and 2014 LHU graduate and Nick Long, also a 2014 LHU graduate, both spent the weekend in Tampa Bay as volunteers as part of the Tampa Bay Super Bowl LV Host Committee. Although this is not their first-time volunteering at the big game, this year proved to be a little different with so much emphasis on safety during the pandemic.

Under normal circumstances, LHU’s Sport Management Club would have taken a group of students to volunteer at either the Super Bowl or College Football Playoff, but due to the pandemic, students were not able to attend this year. Instead, Mattern and Long used the opportunity to learn more about how the professional sports world is coping with the impact of COVID-19.

“The NFL did a great job at protecting fans and workers. The branding and signage were everywhere to remind everyone to social distance and wear your mask,” Long said. “All of the messaging was very fan-facing and inviting.”

Long also noted some of the many new protocols that could become part of the “new normal.” “They partnered with Visa for a reverse ATM to turn cash into a Visa credit card,” he said. “QR codes for all digital menus. Sanitization team members being visible throughout the facility.”

Although students were not able to volunteer at this year’s game, Mattern was able to gain first-hand knowledge on how the pandemic was changing the working world of sports and what that meant for students looking to work in the industry.

“Trying to produce a mega-event such as the Super Bowl in the middle of a pandemic is an amazing feat,” Mattern said. “The attention to detail and emphasis on safety is one that the industry has never seen before.”

The two observed many new health and safety procedures that soon could become the standard for sporting events. “This will bring on new opportunities within the industry that focus on health and safety,” Mattern said. “Employers should be looking to expand in these areas and find even better ways to market these events given the current circumstances. The creativity of students coming into the field will be at a premium.”

For more information about the Department of Sport Studies at LHU, visit https://www.lockhaven.edu/sportstudiesdep/.

For more information on Lock Haven University, visit www.lockhaven.edu, email admissions@lockhaven.edu, or call 570-484-2011. 

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Lock Haven University’s main campus is located on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River in the scenic mountains of Pennsylvania. The university offers 49 undergraduate majors and certifications with 47 minors and five graduate programs.

LHU is a member of Pennsylvania’s State System, the largest provider of higher education in the Commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 2,300 degree and certificate programs in more than 530 academic areas of study. Nearly 520,000 system alumni live and work in Pennsylvania.

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Elizabeth Arnold
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(570) 484-2293

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