Matt Senske may not have started out on top but through his perseverance at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and in his current job with the Omaha Storm Chasers baseball franchise he’s certainly been making an effort to get there. Senske received both an undergraduate degree in business administration and an MBA from the College of Business Administration. Through it all he’s kept his focus on working hard by doing the things that he enjoys most.
“When I came to Nebraska I originally wanted to be in architecture,” said Senske. “But I really decided to come to Nebraska because there were so many options here.”
After taking his general classes Senske saw that his options at the business college would give him more opportunity to pursue what he really wanted to do – a career in the business of professional sports.
“I talked to professors at the business college and I realized it gave me so many more options, whether it’s sports which I’m doing now, or going in to the corporate world. I could do a lot more with a business degree.”
Senske simultaneously competed in both track and field and in football at Bellevue East high school. He eventually did the same at UNL competing in discus and javelin in track and field, and as a fullback for the Cornhusker football team. He won honors as first team academic All-Big 12, was placed on the Brook Berringer Citizenship Team, as well as landing on the Big 12 honor roll multiple times.
“I did both sports for three years. I had some injuries that forced me out of track but I still did football my senior year.”
After finishing his senior year Senske began to pursue his MBA.
“I finished up my MBA last May and I knew I wanted to stay in sports no matter what so I started applying all across the country. I applied with the NY Knicks, Washington Wizards, Denver Nuggets, Kansas City Chiefs. The experience was fun but difficult at the same time because I’d get these interviews and they were very interested because they liked my athletic background, they liked my business degree, and they liked my having some sales experience. But then they’d say, ‘You don’t have sports sales experience.’”
That’s when Senske’s hard work began to pay off. The Omaha Storm Chasers baseball team recently transitioned from playing games at Rosenblatt Stadium in South Omaha to moving out to Sarpy County in a recently completed new facility called Werner Park. With the changes came new job opportunities and Senske took advantage of the opening and became a ticket sales executive with the team.
“Being from Bellevue and knowing the area and having local contacts it’s really worked out great. My main objective is group sales. Whether that’s a company picnic, a church outing, or a school field trip – I talk to those people and help setup those events.”
Although there is a certain amount of rejection when groups tell him no, the fun part for Senske has been creating enthusiasm for the newly resettled minor league affiliate of the Kansas City Royals.
Senske’s experience at UNL also has helped him to succeed in his new job.
“In the MBA classes I took, and more and more in the undergraduate courses at the college of business, you learn to work in teams and perform team exercises. That’s helped out so much because I did that in school throughout and didn’t really have much work experience.”
Senske uses those team skills running the Kid’s Zone at Werner Park, helping lead a staff of co-workers, figuring out complicated scheduling issues for the team, and other work associated with moving into a new ballpark.
Although he doesn’t know exactly what the future holds Senske intends to continue integrating his business skills with the world of sports entertainment.
“I really do want to stay in sports and I’ll figure it out as I go. I want at some point to transition to the NBA. Right now I love being here but if I had the opportunity to work with an NBA team that would be great. My ultimate goal would be to be a general manager for an NBA team – that would be awesome.”
Senske has already come a long way to realize his career aspirations – so don’t be surprised if the NBA isn’t the next stop for this MBA.