CC&ES Alumni in the Real World
"Working at CCES was the most rewarding experience I had while attending Ithaca College. As the Lead Event and Marketing Coordinator I was given an immense amount of responsibility within the department. This position required me to train, schedule, and offer daily oversight to an amazing group of students responsible for the planning and execution of 275 different events throughout my senior year. This experience allowed me to hone the communication and organizational skills required to work in the event planning industry. I also learned rather quickly how to manage change, be resourceful, and how to juggle multiple tasks at once. The best part of this job was the learning environment that the office provided me and my fellow students. Working alongside and shadowing the different Event Planners we learned how to deal with difficult clients, all about the "ripple effect" which is how every component of an event affects one another, and how to manage the craziness that's comes along with being in the event industry.
I currently am a Sales Coordinator of the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel and Conference Center and I give credit to the Office of Campus Center and Event Services for preparing me to land my first job out of college rather quickly and in the my desired field. As the Sales Coordinator I am responsible for assisting the Sales Managers in the planning and executing of weddings, social events, meetings and some major conferences. On a daily basis I am utilizing the skills I've developed over my three years working at CCES and every day I am thankful for my time spent with the students and faculty of this department."
- Stephanie Raabe '12 (www.linkedin.com/stephraabe) Follow Stephy: @steph_raabe
"Although there are many things that I miss about Ithaca College, CCES is by far at the top of the list. As the Lead Campus Center and Operations Manager, I had a variety of responsibilities related to my passion of event planning. I was expected to organize the schedule of event set-ups and strikes, facilitate staff meetings, and manage the operations team at the Information Desk and Recreation Center. It was in this position that I honed my organizational, interpersonal, and professional skills. I also learned how to deal with emergencies in a calm way which, in the events world, is a necessary skill to have. Most importantly, working in CCES made me realize the importance of having a supportive and positive group of people working beside me. When things became stressful, having a great set of coworkers made everything more manageable!
Therefore, when I got the position of Events and Catering Coordinator at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square, I knew I was prepared to take on the challenges of this new endeavor. The Hilton San Francisco Union Square is the largest hotel on the West Coast, taking up an entire city block and consisting of over 100,000 sq. ft. of event space. As an Events and Catering Coordinator, I am responsible for providing on-the-floor assistance for large conventions and events. I also have my own clients, for whom I manage all of their event requests, from set-up requirements to menu choices. I love my job and know without a doubt that my background in CCES made it possible for me to get it! Both the people with whom I worked and the lessons that I learned in my 2.5 years with CCES will forever be a part of the memories that I cherish from IC, and a contributing factor to the successes that I will have in my career. THANK YOU!"
- MooMoo Jones '12
"Since November of 2012 I have been working for Royal Caribbean International cruise line, an industry focused in hospitality aboard cruise ships that travel the world. Upon joining the company I started as a Youth Staff. The Youth Staff team is responsible for running all kids programs onboard from ages 3-18 years. After my first five months with the company, I volunteered to participate in the new Nursery program Royal Caribbean was introducing fleet wide. This new kids program is a specialized program for children ages 6 months – 2 years. Since my switch to Nursery Staff I have been included in the process of opening two new nurseries for the company. During my year at CCES I was given an amazing opportunity to put theatrical practice from the classroom into real life situations. Starting as a Services Event Manager (SEM), I was introduced to the world of event planning by first managing events and then gradually taking on an internship role to plan campus events start to finish. With the guidance and mentoring from the CCES staff my experience at CCES enabled me to improve on my customer service skills, leadership qualities, ability to work in a team centered environment, and most importantly, grow in my hospitality skills. All of these skills have greatly benefited my ability to move forward within Royal Caribbean while also being able to provide a great guest experience for the customers Royal Caribbean services year round on a daily basis."
- Ashley Pellegrino '11
"Working at Campus Center and Event Services prepared me in a multitude of ways for my career in the events industry post-graduation. As an assistant to the CEO of BizBash Media, a few of my responsibilities include scheduling, office management, working in cross-functional teams, and event coordination. More than anything, my job revolves around organization and problem solving, which I developed working at CC&ES. As an event manager, set-up manager, office manager, etc., it was my responsibility to meet client demands and find ways to make things work. It works the same way at BizBash. I was able to use examples of my problem solving skills working at CC&ES in my interview with BizBash, demonstrating my skills and how I handle pressure. Having solid organizational skills makes work more efficient, less stressful, and are essential for any role in this industry." UPDATE: Josh was just promoted to Events Manager at BizBash in February 2013. Congrats Josh!
-Josh Rivera '11 (www.linkedin.com/joshrivera) Follow Josh: @joshriveranyc
"I interned in the CC&ES Department during my senior year, and I can proudly say that it was one of the best decisions I made while at Ithaca College. The knowledge that I learned while interning there is invaluable, and the people I learned from are great teachers and advisors. I was introduced to the department on campus because I was actively involved in numerous organizations that utilized the services provided by CC&ES. From the first meeting I had with an event planner in the office, I knew that I wanted to be a part of the department.
During the internship, I was able to gain insight into each area of the event planning field: A/V, set-up, scheduling of conference rooms and venues on campus, food and beverage, logistics, and staffing for the events. My main role in the internship was to coordinate all logistics and write event summaries for a selection of both small and large events that happened on campus. I learned from and shadowed an amazing team of Event Planners in the department that individually all hold a wealth of knowledge and diverse set of skills. The internship taught me how to use my time efficiently, and how to hold effective meetings with clients. Most importantly, I also improved my ability to multi-task and stay organized, and learned the benefits of communicating within a team-oriented environment.
It is thanks to the internship in the CC&ES department, organizations that I was a part of at Ithaca, and my degree in Communication Management & Design, that confirmed my interest in the event planning industry. I can happily and proudly say that my experience in the CC&ES department gave me a considerable advantage post-graduation, and significantly helped prepare me for the position I currently hold now, Special Events Coordinator at Societe Generale Corporate & Investment Banking in New York City."
-Abby Brewer '10 (www.linkedin.com/abbybrewer)
"I couldn't have been happier with my time spent working at CC&ES - I really enjoyed learning more about the inner workings of events at Ithaca College and how important good organization and coordination is to completing a successful project. My favorite part was seeing how the student workers and full-time staff could come together to make a great team. It was easy to work in such a positive and supportive atmosphere. I also loved getting to know many of the student organizations and other departments on campus, through meeting with them to discuss various event details. As I gained trust from my co-workers and received more responsibility, I was always discovering new ways to communicate and plan events more effectively. My experience with CC&ES was incredibly rewarding and absolutely translates to my career post graduation. At CC&ES, I gained experience in effective communication, teamwork, and multi-tasking - I absolutely use these skills everyday! As a Communications Support Specialist at Business Concepts, a small consulting and coaching business, I am constantly learning and implementing new processes as well as working with my co-workers to share responsibilities. I am expected to balance several projects at once while maintaining focus and giving lots of attention to detail."
- Kelsey Walzer '11 (www.linkedin.com/in/kelseywalzer)
Want to work for an office that PREPARES YOU for exciting jobs in the events field? Check out our job openings today!