Ready, Set, Disney
Mount Alum, Devin Hollenbaugh, set his sights on the land where dreams come true
Devin Hollenbaugh, C ’09, was recently hired as a program manager for the Disney Sports business unit of the Walt Disney Company, specifically for runDisney. RunDisney hosts a series of full-length and short-distance themed races on the Disney grounds, where “every mile is magic.”
“As a project-based analyst, it’s my job to prepare the tools necessary for executive management to make the right business decisions for each event, ” he said. These tools, formed from raw data, include demographics on the participating runners. The number of runners for each event is tracked, as well as their age and sex.
He is responsible for gathering data on events such as the Tinker Bell Half Marathon, Disney’s Princess Half Marathon, and the Expedition Everest Challenge. These events bring more than 150,000 runners and walkers onto Disney’s properties annually.
Hollenbaugh, a native of Westminster, Maryland, started working on his MBA immediately after earning his bachelor’s degree from the Mount. He credits his experience participating on the SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise) team and working as a Graduate Assistant (GA) at the Center for Professional and Continuing Studies in Frederick with preparing him for the work that he is doing today.
“I learned how to be poised and cool under pressure, to speak and write clearly and concisely, and to present myself with confidence—all invaluable skills for success,” he said of his experience with SIFE. The international non-profit organization works with students of higher education to become better business leaders.
He owes much of his potential growth to working as a GA. “The most important aspects of my MBA studies taught me to assess situations and to think critically about real-world business decisions and issues.” He adds, “but working as part of a small staff, taught me first-hand that being flexible to customer needs and offering creative solutions is key in today’s workplace.
Those are the skills that I know Disney appreciates in me, because they are valued here.”
Hollenbaugh’s position with Disney Sports allows him to play to the strengths of business analysis, marketing strategies, and project management while remaining very close to many of the big decisions being made at the company. He’s had the opportunity to host several of Disney’s international business partners in Orlando, to help them learn about Disney’s business structure and practices.
“It really is a cool first job.” he said. “The experience both as a graduate and undergraduate at the Mount prepared me for this job. I wouldn’t trade it for the world!”