Irish-American culture and special events come together in the perfect internship for Lexington student Becky Tatz
With America’s Irish-American population nearing 4 million, it’s no surprise that Lexington student Becky Tatz (Class of 2016, from Columbus, Ohio) found herself quite busy in her internship at the Irish American Heritage Center in Chicago. As the Events Sales and Marketing Intern at the large Heritage Center on the northwest side of the city, Becky was a key player on-site at big events such as the weekend-long St. Patrick’s day celebration, the Irish Summer Festival, the Rose of Tralee banquet, the annual Open house, and the Hall of Fame gala—not to mention numerous weddings and family celebrations.
With a theatre, library, museum, art gallery, authentic Irish pub, dance studios, and numerous function rooms, the Irish American Heritage Center has a lot going on. It is a popular venue for weddings and special events. Although the historic building has been renovated, from an event planner’s perspective, “it’s still an old building,” Becky says, remembering challenging moments with big rings of keys, out of the way fuse boxes and hidden storage closets. “The volunteers were my best resource,” Becky says, “many of them are immigrants from Ireland. They are deeply committed and know the building like the back of their hand.” Becky enjoyed the busy days with many events happening at the same time. She laughs as she remembers the time a table leg under the coffee station collapsed. Luckily, she caught the coffee urn just in time to prevent her guests being drenched in hot coffee.