After being away from home for my first year at college, I had a few expectations for my summer: one of them being that I would spend a great deal of time working. When I packed my things up to go back home to Harrisburg, I knew that I’d miss the city so to fill my time I planned on doing nothing but working. I originally intended to get a staffing internship at Hershey Park, but when things don’t go as planned, new opportunities arise and I say this from experience. I ended up getting an internship as a Reservations specialist at Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, and what a learning experience that has been.
The first (and probably most important) thing I learned was the customer service industry may not be for me, but that’s what internships are about: finding out what you like and do not like. My days consist of answering phone calls, making reservations for lodging, and answering general questions about Hershey Park. We serve as the guests’ first point of contact with Hershey, and it’s my job to make sure they have a positive experience, which isn’t hard. It can be difficult, but when you talk as much as I do, you get the hang of it. At first I questioned how exactly public relations related to what I was doing, and then I remembered something very important: everything is public relations. It’s probably one of the most important things that I came to realize in my Intro to Public Relations class, which is how I’ve also learned that it takes a special kind of person to provide quality customer service, and that working in the hospitality industry is really built around the relationship between the customer and the company.
I’ve been doing hundred-hour pay periods and at this point, I’ve talked to thousands of people who come from all walks of life. It’s opened my eyes to all the opportunities that can come from even the most unexpected of places, and that’s why I love what public relations can do. It excites me to meet more people, and I’m even more thrilled to get into the field that I’ve chosen.
Overall, I’ve had a pretty tame summer. I learned a lot about what it is like to work in the corporate field, met some amazing people, and spent time with the people that mean the most to me. I’m really looking forward to meeting even more people, and I hope to get an internship this semester. I’m excited to have a great semester with Temple PRSSA, but next summer I really do need a vacation.
By: Thatcher Williams