Team of students provides key support at Little League Baseball World Series

Four interns selected specifically to help during the Little League Baseball World Series — Will Desautelle, Remy Daron, Nicole Ambruch and Sammy Blackburn, left to right — are part of an even bigger group of Penn State students assisting with or covering the event. Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

(Editor's Note: This is the 13th in a series of articles about Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications students completing summer internships.)

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Along with players on 16 teams from around the globe, the Little League Baseball World Series continues this week with the help of a team of students from the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications.

As part of an inaugural partnership with Little League, several students are working on site in Williamsport to prepare and present the 10-day event that attracts more than 100,000 viewers in person and millions more on television.

Nicole Ambruch, Sammy Blackburn and Remy Daron started their internships in July by editing videos and creating highlight packages from Little League’s regional tournaments. Those videos were shared online, on the Little League app, and even in the stadium during game day at the World Series.

“It was an appealing opportunity because of the editing,” said Daron, a senior film-video major. “Sometimes a lot of those kinds of things are not available. When the World Series began and we got out of the office, we got more hands on with cameras in the stadium and for the video boards. That’s been great, too.”

Like Daron, fellow seniors Ambruch and Blackburn have worked almost exclusively on camera operations and highlights. Each previously attended the World Series as a fan, and each has embraced the opportunity to help produce the event.

“It just feels like we’ve been able to help enhance the entertainment piece, and enjoyment, for fans,” said Blackburn, a broadcast journalism major. “Working behind the scenes like that has given me an appreciation of the kinds of things that are possible once I graduate. The people we work with at Little League have been super.”

Ambruch worked at the Little League Baseball World Series in a similar role last season and returned this year with more experience and familiarity.

“Knowing what to expect has made me better at getting what our producers want,” she said. “In that way, I think it’s made the whole event a little better. This is a fun, special event, and playing a small role in it has been great.”

While Daron, Ambruch and Blackburn started in July, a fourth intern specifically for the World Series joined them the day before the event began. Senior journalism major Will Desautelle worked most of the summer as an intern at WJLA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Washington, D.C.

Since the Little League World Series started, though, he has been writing stories for Little League’s website and related outlets.

He live-tweets from games and has written feature stories about subjects such as the first female tandem of team hosts for the tournament, and an umpire and his wife from Hawaii who made leis for all of the teams at the event.

“It’s a great mix,” he said. “It’s practical experience at a special event. It’s just been a wonderful opportunity.”

Those four students are just part of an even bigger Penn State team. Two other students from the Bellisario College, Dylan Jacobs and Erin Rush, earned summer-long internships with Little League where they’ve focused on digital media and media relations, respectively.

Also, in a separate effort, students from the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism have provided content for The Associated Press during the World Series. Writers David Eckert and Tyler King have covered the games and written feature stories, while photographer James Leavy has captured images of the action. Their work has been picked up by Associated Press news outlets across the country and beyond.

Action at the Little League Baseball World Series continues with two games each on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday this week, leading to the championship game on Sunday, Aug. 25.

All of the students work until Sunday, and will return to the University Park campus that evening for the start of classes Monday.

“We’ll be working right up until it’s time to come back, but it’s been a great experience,” Daron said.

Last Updated June 02, 2021