Andrew Kivette wasn’t one of Mount Paran Christian’s well-known athletes during his high school career, but now he is in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y.
Kivette didn’t get there because of his batting average, home runs or ERA, but rather as a summer intern, one of 15 from across the country to earn the prestigious Frank and Peggy Steele internship.
“It’s been an awesome opportunity so far,” Kivette said. Working at the Hall of Fame has been such prestigious opportunity. It’s one of the coolest and greatest opportunities I can dream of. We’re working alongside guys that worked with the Rangers and Yankees. They have so much baseball knowledge. It’s incredible to be a part of so far.”
Kivette grew up in a sports family. He has been a lifelong Alabama fan, and his grandfather, Bill Lumpkin, was the sports editor and columnist for the old Birmingham Post Herald.
While not the most athletic — he spent one year as a member of the Eagles’ tennis team — Kivette always knew he wanted to have a career in sports. He started down that path with four years at Mount Paran keeping stats, taking video, breaking down game film and helping any one of the Eagles sports programs he could.
“He did a ton of stuff for me, breaking film down, announcing our webcasting,” former Mount Paran basketball coach Scott Varner said. “He and I did girls basketball together, and he would do the boys games alone. Then he would come back, and do game film and redo stats. He shined in those moments.
“He knew what he wanted to do since he was in the eighth grade.”
After graduating in 2011, Kivette headed for Tuscaloosa, Ala., to the University of Alabama, and has already spent two years as a staff assistant for the Crimson Tide’s sports information department.
Kivette applied for the Steele internship in January. He had a phone interview with Craig Muder, the Hall’s director of communications, in February. Kivette sent Muder writing samples, and he said he was offered the internship 48 hours later in Hall’s public relations department.
Having logged more than 500 hours in the sports industry, and being a fulltime student helped Kivette’s cause. He worked at the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four in Atlanta, numerous SEC events in a variety of sports, and the BBT Atlanta Open tennis tournament last summer.
Now, three weeks into his internship, Kivette’s written stories on former New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles pitcher Mike Mussina. He’s also written a piece on New York Giants pitcher Carl Hubbell striking out five straight Hall of Fame players – Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmy Foxx, Al Simmons and Joe Cronin – in the 1934 All-Star game.
Kivette walks through the plaque gallery multiple times a day. He has access to the research library along with thousands of player files.
“Getting to see the behind-the-scenes stuff is incredible,” Kivette said.