As a former member of the Penn State women’s basketball team when she attended the university from 1988-1992, it’s safe to say Kathy Drysdale is familiar with the Penn State Athletic system. After graduation, Drysdale wen on to work her way up from an intern to the head of marketing with the 76ers in Philadelphia as a behind-the-scenes boss. After some time as both a coach and SID for Abington, Drysdale says she “came home” to Penn State.
In regards to whether or not the sports industry is still an exclusive boys club, Drysdale doesn’t think so. “People have this misconception that this is supposed to be a male dominated profession and in all reality it really isn’t. We can do just as good as them,” says Drysdale. “It may look that way, but it doesn’t feel it.”
As the only female marketing manager for Penn State Athletics, Drysdale feels she still gets the respect she deserves and dishes it right back. “I think ‘proof is in the pudding’ so to say,” she says.
Overseeing the marketing and game flow for the women’s basketball team, wrestling team, men and women’s volleyball teams takes a lot of flexibility. “Last minute stuff happens all the time,” says Drysdale.
However, having something different to do everyday and not being confined to a desk everyday are Drysdale’s favorite aspects of the job. She also loves to teach those who want to go into the field as well. A big lesson Drysdale likes to teach is that no matter how long you’re in the business, you’ll always be getting your hands dirty.
“I’ve paid my dues, but it doesn’t matter. I have to show those that we’re teaching that it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the business, you’re still going to lift a box,” she says.
We also commend Drysdale’s work-life balance. “I’m a single mom so trying to balance my son and my job is very challenging,” says Drysdale.
Drysdale, although she deems it a challenge, seems to be an exemplary model for being a great mom and business woman.
Drysdale seems to thrive off of challenge and change doesn’t scare her. “Change is good. For some people, change is a challenge but change can also be good,” she says. “You have to make sure you adapt and work with new vision.”