Touchdown on Lifelong Learning: Kyle Eversgerd '07
By Theresa Schmidt
In the game of life, McKendree alum Kyle Eversgerd is scoring touchdowns left and right in the field of lifelong learning. The former McKendree football player has been making his mark on the St. Louis sports scene ever since his graduation from McKendree with a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Communication (emphasis in Sales and Marketing) in 2007. He explains, “One of the greatest aspects of my current position [as Fan Development Coordinator for the St. Louis Rams] is being part of a team. Much like the Rams on the field every Sunday, our corporate side of the building works together in a variety of aspects. Additionally, my position has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of interesting people, from local high school football athletes to tornado victims in Joplin to members of the Greatest Show on Turf to Professional Football Hall of Famers.”
"Not a day goes by that I don’t feel very lucky to be in this position ..."
However, success hasn’t come without risks: Kyle owes his current position to a long “hail mary pass” in 2009: “I was hired as the Community Outreach Department Intern in May of 2009. [When] our organization restructured and created a traditional marketing department, I approached our Vice President of Marketing and presented him with a position I thought I would be ideal for. In February of 2010, the position of Fan Development Coordinator was created for me and I have been in that role since. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel very lucky to be in this position and am humbled by the opportunities I can be a part of.”
"My experience at McKendree as a student-athlete prepared me immensely for my current position with the Rams."
Fortunately, Kyle learned lessons at McKendree that have helped him not to fumble such successes and opportunities. He says, “My experience at McKendree as a student-athlete prepared me immensely for my current position with the Rams. I played four years of football, took a full course load every semester and also worked 16 hours per week in a student program at Scott Air Force Base. More than anything, managing my time with several responsibilities while in college helped prepare me for my career today.”
"My experience gave me the opportunity to grow as a person ..."
As a result, Kyle still feels a close connection to McKendree. He adds, “McKendree will always be a special place for me and rarely do I drive through Lebanon on my way home to Breese, IL and not stop to ‘check out campus.’ In fact, Kyle is scheduled to speak at a brown bag luncheon at McKendree in November, and will introduce former Rams pro-bowler Aeneas Williams at the Distinguished Speaker Series at the Hettenhausen Center for the Arts in February. Kyle remembers, “I have so many fond memories of my time at McKendree. I will always remember my first road trip with the football team and also being in the stands for Coach Statham’s 880th victory! I knew going into [McKendree] I probably wasn’t going to play in the NFL, but my experience gave me the opportunity to grow as a person, and I guess I made it to the NFL in some fashion.”
"College is mainly about people."
At McKendree, Kyle learned that these relationships that make a person a winner: “Looking back, I loved the small class sizes and having the ability to get to know a lot of people. I learned that college isn’t all about books, exams, projects or parties. College is mainly about people. The people you meet, work with and especially those you become lifelong friends with. I have a lot of friends and colleagues who attended much larger schools, but in the end, I truly believe there are several hundred people I attended McKendree with that I could walk up to after years of not seeing each other and start up a conversation like we never skipped a beat.”
"I did have the tools to continue to grow and learn ... "
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While he has enjoyed tremendous success, Kyle hasn’t called a “time out” on education just yet: “No matter what field you work in, things are always changing and you have to continue to educate yourself - there is always new and relevant information out there that you can empower yourself with. If you think you have all the knowledge you need, you will be swept off your feet. I didn’t walk across the stage and receive my diploma at McKendree with everything I needed to enter the real world at full force. But I did have the tools to continue to grow and learn and I feel like I have made the most of them thus far.”