Sidebottom Enjoys New Role With the Jayhawks

July 19, 2010


For three years she had it all planned out. She was going to graduate from the University of Kansas with a degree in information systems and then move to Kansas City to take a job she had been eyeing since her sophomore year of college. But then the economy took a downturn and Sara Sidebottom’s job offer went out the window.

Everything happens for a reason, that’s the way Sidebottom sees it. Although she was disappointed that her employment opportunity fell through, it merely opened the door to a new and better opportunity – a chance to work for the Kansas Athletics Department.

Sidebottom, a native of Hutchinson, Kan., played one year of softball at Pratt Community College before transferring to KU and serving as a catcher for the Jayhawks from 2006-08.

During her senior year at Kansas, Sidebottom needed an internship to fulfill one of her class requirements. For this she was able to earn an intership with the information systems department at Kansas Athletics.

“I didn’t really want to go get some random internship at a company that I had no interest in just to fill my class requirements,” said Sidebottom. “That’s when my academic counselor suggested I contact the KU IT department.”

Sidebottom interned in the IT office during the summer after her senior year, but she still had one more semester of classes before she graduated. Luckily, the department agreed to keep her on part-time. She was then offered a full-time position, available when she graduated. Sidebottom didn’t have to think twice before gladly excepting her new role with the Jayhawks.

“I like the atmosphere of the athletics department,” Sidebottom said. “I love being able to work with the different coaching staffs and work behind the scenes to help them do their job. Seeing how everything works behind the scenes is really neat and makes for a really great work environment. It doesn’t feel like a job because I love what I do.”

Instead of traveling between classes and practice on the KU campus, Sidebottom now spends her days helping KU Athletics employees with their technology issues.

“A majority of my day is filled with troubleshooting problems for people in the athletics department,” said Sidebottom. “It ranges from ‘my computer won’t turn on’ to ‘I hit print 14 times and it won’t print.’ I also set up computers for new hires and help with cell phone issues. It really varies and that’s what I like about my job. I don’t know what’s going to happen on a day-to-day basis. Being able to troubleshoot and problem sovle as quickly as possible is what I really like. It challenges me everyday.”

Where uncertainty once loomed, Sidebottom has settled into her job at Kansas and recently purchased her first house and a Brussells Griffon puppy named Raja.

“I’m really comfortable with where I’m at right now,” Sidebottom said of her new career. “I love my job and I’m at a good point with everything in my life. I’m content.”