Name: Matt Martel
Hometown: Lexington, MA
Occupation: Market Manager of Mass EDMC
HC: You’re incredibly busy! Tell me about your involvements and what a typical day is like for you.
Matt: I’ve done a lot in the past four years. Some activities were just for a semester, while others were all four years. My earliest involvement was Not Ready For Bedtime Players. I saw them at my freshman orientation and I thought, “I should be up there.” Two months later, I was a full time member. I joined a cast of 13 members, mostly upperclassmen. I was one of two freshmen and I did theater for three years.
One thing lead to another in terms of opportunities and I ended up making a Public Service Announcement for the District Attorney’s office on Bystander Intervention, and it actually got published by the New York Times. They wrote a scholastic piece on UMass and the UMatter Campaign, which we were a huge part of, so it was really an honor. Another thing that the Bedtime Players lead me to was an underage drinking prevention conference where I lead a workshop on improvisation as part of our seminar on how to start a theater troupe at a high school. Being an active member of the troupe was great, but the opportunities that came from it were even better.
So a regular day in my life is busy with either class or selling tickets in the Campus Center for the Mullins Center events, or recently planning Spring Fest. I also manage a few social media accounts for companies and try to post daily. My favorite account is probably Lit Nightclub, where I am more than just a bartender; my roles involve working with the interns to coordinate promotions and public relations, as well as client hospitality. In fact, I recently hung out with The Chainsmokers after their show at Amherst College in an attempt to bring them to Lit for bottle service, but they decided to go to some frat party.
I love making drinks, hospitality, and the social media piece, but from my experience at Lit I definitely see a future in artist management. I want to keep moving forward within the concert and music industries. I had an artist wristband at Ultra Music Festival and that put me on the main stage with Gronk. In Cancún I had an all access media pass on Spring Break and was able to bring my camera to all the v
enues. I was backstage at both UMass and Amherst Spring Concerts, and I think eventually I’ll meet the right person at one of these shows.
HC: How do you go to all these places? *laughs*
Matt: I try to keep all my work music industry relevant, whether it’s taking pictures at the event, pitching table service to a client, or just networking. I also work in the industry for Mass EDMC. For the Adam Devine Comedy Show, I distributed the marketing materials and managed a team of 50 promoters who generated creative marketing missions and social media promos. I’d track their progress through software we use and reward them accordingly with free tickets and other incentives. I work directly with the Mullins Center to oversee ticket sales and also assist NV Concepts with talent booking and ticket pricing. I did this all a few more times with Fantazia, Skrillex, and the Winter White Tour.
Four massive events and over 10,000 tickets sold. My mom is very proud.
HC: It’s very obvious that you’re multifaceted, so what is your favorite skill to practice?
Matt: Definitely Event Management. I’ve volunteered at about one blood drive a month for the past four years for the American Red Cross. I started as a volunteer, put in a lot of hours, stepped up when extra help was needed. With all my experience I became valuable on the behind the scenes work, and was elected as an officer and then President in my senior year. In addition to blood drives I’ve also hosted open mic nights, and was the Master of Ceremonies at Relay for Life.
HC: What was it like being the host of a game show?
Matt: That was awesome! The Roommate Game was definitely a highlight of my UMass career. Jeff Jablon brought the concept to UMass, which is a spinoff of the Newlywed Game, basically how well do you know your roommate. We filmed the show in front of a live audience at Monkey Bar, so that was kind of a challenge. Performing in front of a drunken audience and sometimes drunk contestants was tough, but still a really unique and entertaining live experience.
HC: What are you most proud of?
Matt: Alongside Dillon Landino & Mikayla Mantino, I helped plan Spring Fest, a one-day festival and ALS fundraiser. We sold 1,500 tickets and successfully raised over $10,000 for the ALS Association. The event was awesome and of course for a good cause in years past, but this year we were able to legitimize the festival experience. I worked directly with production companies to bring in proper sound and staging. I booked a diverse lineup including one vocalist, a rapper, four bands, and two DJ’s. We also brought in food, beer, and merchandise vendors, and from our efforts we were made official members of the Spring Fest founding team. The event was so successful that we’re already talking about having a Fall Fest.
Overall, I am really proud of the charity work that I’ve done. Along with my contributions ALS and the American Red Cross, I also facilitated a Bone Marrow Drive for the Gift of Life. We were able to send out over 80 registrations, potentially 80 people’s lives changed forever, definitely a point of pride.
I also want to give a quick shout out to Isenberg. I was a Teaching Assistant and I took some of the Entrepreneurship courses, which lead me to first place at the UMass Minute Pitch Challenge among other rewarding opportunities like working for Feat Socks.
HC: Have you always been a people person?
Matt: I don’t think so. I remember in middle school I had a tough time after switching schools in seventh grade. I kept to myself and focused on school, but I didn’t really like where that was getting me. Yes I was doing well in school, but whenever a stranger would approach me I felt so uncomfortable talking to them. It was really holding me back, so I decided to force myself to be social and I pushed myself to engage people, even when I felt awkward. I stopped walking around with my headphones in and starting saying “Hi” to that stranger when we made eye contact, and I eventually got the hang of it. I decided that I wanted to impact people. I want to be memorable. That’s why I was able to accomplish so much at UMass. I genuinely love talking to and helping people, and those conversations turned into opportunities.
I really enjoyed my time here at UMass Amherst. I was pretty close to putting down a deposit for B.U, but I’m so glad I didn’t. I’ve put a lot of positive energy into this university and a lot of effort into my involvements, and all that positivity has come right back to me. Everything I’ve done has paid off in some way and each opportunity has lead to another. I feel very fortunate to have been a part of and all of the things I have been involved with on campus, and I’m looking forward to using all of this momentum into the next chapter of life.
*All photos were taken by my amazing boyfriend and best friend, Conor Olmsted from Last Night was Epic.
Find Matt on Instagram: @mattyicemarts