Networking opens doors

By Michael Pernice, Secondary Education of English, English Literature, & Computer Systems Technology, The Education Partnership Social Media & Marketing Intern

This past Wednesday, September 23rd 2020, The Education Partnership (TEP) held its biggest fundraiser of the year, the annual golf outing at Laurel Valley Country Club. This event is crucial to securing the financial backing needed to continue our mission at TEP. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, TEP had 26 four-somes register for the outing. Due to the number of participants and new health regulations, some four-somes were asked to partake on day two for their round of golf.

I arrived at Laurel Valley Country Club at 9am excited and eager to help in whatever role my team needed me too! I started off the day by helping at the registration table, greeting and handing out the welcome gifts to the golfers as they arrived for check-in. This was a great opportunity to introduce and network myself to over 100 high-profiled businessmen and women based in the Western Pennsylvania Region.

One of the people that I connected with is Executive Director Bethany Vietmeier of The Bus Stops Here Foundation. I was seated next to Ms. Vietmeier during the live auction held later that evening during dinner. During our conversation she informed me on the mission of Jerome Bettis’s foundation as well as the many roles that she has assumed during her career at the foundation. Despite being the executive director, she is also the personal assistant to Mr. Bettis and former Pittsburgh Steelers running back, Merril Hoge. This role has her handling all aspects of public relations for both former Steelers, a busy woman for sure! At the end of the event, Ms. Vietmeier and I exchanged business cards and talked about scheduling her to be a guest on my podcast ( to explain indepthly what her jobs entail and to share the many stories that she has, a few of which she had shared with me at dinner.


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