Success Stories

Grad works with Whitecaps, Wings

According to Greg Monahan, '11, “working 14-hour days isn’t so bad when you get to watch a Wings’ game for a few hours in the middle.”

As a public relations assistant with the Detroit Red Wings, Monahan finds himself daily at Joe Louis Arena, the Wings’ home rink in Detroit. Working next to the team’s radio announcer, Ken Kal, Monahan says he feels lucky to be a part of the Red Wings’ organization.

A typical day includes writing press releases and compiling game day notes for the media that often contain up to 60 pages of stats and player bios used by broadcasters and sportswriters during the game. Monahan admitted that he once forgot to give Red Wings color commentator Mickey Redmond a copy of the day’s game notes, and found himself running up and down the stairs of the giant arena to rush a packet to the former NHLer just moments before the start of the game.
Monahan was the beat writer and play-by-play voice for the 2011 ACHA National Champion Grand Valley club hockey team. After the 22-year-old graduated from Grand Valley in April, with a bachelor’s degree in broadcasting, he took a multimedia internship with the West Michigan Whitecaps during the summer. He was charged with creating web pages and graphics for the team’s web site. Monahan said he wished he had more experience with HTML coding,  “...but I learned it all pretty quickly.”

Another aspect of his job was writing for the Whitecaps’ game program and playing the ballpark’s music during the game.  “They just said ‘and by the way you’re also doing this too,’” Monahan said, “I loved it. It was a wild experience influencing the crowd with music.”

As his time at the Whitecaps was winding down, the Red Wings called about a volunteer game night position with the team, a spot Monahan had inquired about a few weeks prior. While disappointed about the unpaid status of this offering, Monahan weighed his options and decided it would be his best choice. Just two hours after the initial interview, the Red Wings staff asked him to come back in to discuss a paid position with the team, a job Monahan didn’t even know was available.

“The job is a blast, and working with my favorite hockey team is a dream come true,” said Monahan. He hopes to earn a similar position with the Detroit Tigers for the summer months and thinks he will have an edge, since both the Red Wings and Tigers are owned by Mike Illitch.  As for his ambitions for the rest of the hockey season, Monahan said, “I hope I can continue to meet new people and learn new things every day.”

by Andrew Justus