Lydia Granahan

Lydia Granahan changed her major to event management to work with a balanced mix of creativity and numbers. As an intern for the Academy of Country Music Awards, Lydia is actively preparing herself for her dream career in the music industry.

Lydia Granahan plans to pursue a career in the music industry. When she isn't focused on schoolwork, Lydia is involved event management club and her sorority. 

Lydia Granahan uses logistics and creativity as a music event manager

Lydia Granahan, a senior in event management, came to Iowa State University as a chemistry major, but changed her major to event management to get a more balanced mix of creativity and numbers.

“I have always had a creative side, and it [event management] lets me use that while also using my logistics brain,” she said.

Lydia’s first experience working in event management was as a volunteer for the Academy of Country Music Awards show during her freshman year in 2017.

Lydia stayed in touch with her supervisors at the ACM Awards, and after a long application process, accepted a position in California as an intern for the 2019 spring semester working on the 2019 Academy of Country Music Awards.

“It was three rounds of interviews, plus the application process, and I knew it was going to be a lot of work,” she said. “But as soon as I got the call that I got it, there was no doubt in my mind that I would be taking it.”

Rita McClain, a lecturer in apparel, events, and hospitality management and Lydia’s internship coordinator, credits Lydia for landing the internship.

“She did all the leg work,” Rita said. “She made a really good connection [as a volunteer] and she kept that connection. Sometimes people don’t always realize how important that is. She took a chance. Not everybody does that.”

As an intern for the Academy of Country Music Awards, Lydia put to use all the skills she picked up as an event management major. Lydia was responsible for tasks that helped the event move smoothly, like coordinating all the travel and hotel reservations for the talent attending the show.

The job was stressful, but Lydia says the workplace environment made everything easier.

“The culture is so overwhelmingly friendly,” Lydia said. “Everybody wants to help, everybody is looking to make your life easier, and it is such a relaxed environment. It’s nice to be able to work with professionals and see how they handle everything.”

As much as Lydia enjoyed working on a red carpet event like the ACM Awards, she wants to explore all her options before she pursues a career in events like this one.

“I’m applying to fashion event internships this summer because that’s the one thing I have left to see before I figure out exactly what I want to be doing,” she said. “I just want to make sure I could or could not count fashion out. I don’t want to have the ‘what if?’”

When Lydia thinks back to her decision freshman year to become an event management major and everything she has been able to accomplish through that decision, she knows she made the right call.

“I have not regretted the decision for a single day.”