As a front office intern I have many responibilities. I began in service expereince being resposnible for many different duties such as answering calls, dispatching jobs and being the ears of the hotel.
On nights audit I was resposible for overturning tyhe business day, cashing the whole day and filing reports for records of the hotel.
As a front desk agent I am the face of the hotel where I check in/out guests, control bill accuracy and meet their expectations.
I cant describe the amount of fun I had on my placement. Other people may think working away from home for 1 year is a struggle. In some senses it can be as you don't have your familys support. However there were so many people that I met who ensured the placement was a great one. The culture of America as well credited towards the year being successful and my overall enjoyment. The actual job itself gave me a great insight into culture, operations and running of a international hotel brand.. It has been one of the best expereinces and jobs I have had to date.
My colleagues always valued me highly and vice versa. They becam a family who were supportive through progression of different departments, job roles and learning new skills. They were always there to assist with any queries and back up decisions I thought best for the departments.
Managers and supervisors were fantastic. Just like my co-workers they were always there to assist with an needs or questions that I had. They were able to see my weaknesses and my strengths and work with me to develop in order to achieve set goals.
The hotel was a vibrant and very busy place. There was always plenty to do. Even during the quite downtime there were plenty of things to do in order to get ready for the busier, upcoming season.
During my placement I had a lot of oppertunities where I had the ability to solve issues, lead the shift and make my own decisions before approaching my managers. This made me feel valued and trusted highly.
I have developed a lot of different skills which will enable me to apply practical knowledge to theroy and see how they both interlink in order to enhance my skill set. I have also been able to develop differnt theories that interlink with my studies and help with work for areas in the course. The expereince and skills will highly help me in seeking graduate employment as it shows I am a hard working, trustworthy and highly expereinced employee.
Everyone is always talking and laughing. Treats, incentives and general fun was always present. Morale was always kept up in the office to make it a fun place to be.
The organisation of the placement could have been better. Through my sponsor I was guarenteed 34-40 hours per week. When the season was slow my hours dropped below 28. It was fairly hard to live through this period with low pay and bills to pay for. When speaking to my sponsor there was bad organisation between the hotel and my sponsor in organisating hours and a soulution to finacial issues. The transition from airport to the island was left to myself where as other interns had a lot more organisation then when I started.
The company go out of their way to ensure that all employess recieve enxtensive training, have opeprtunities to evolve and grow and build your stregths. They pay for differnt training oppertunities, give you all the tools for success and review progress reguarly to ensure development.
They look very promising with oppertunities to return in a higher position and develop a promising career in starwood.
There is an excellent social scene at the Westin. All associates are welcoming and friendly. The westin hosts several events but even outside of work there are many events arranged such as BBQs and parties to attend to get to know others.
The cost of living is fairly high. Although rent maybe considered low, the bills definatly built up in the cold seasons. Food and gas were fairly expensive. As there is no public transport cabs get very pricey. It is worth having a car.
There is limited nightlife on the island. Just a collect of small bars on the south island. As I am only 20 I was limited to nightlife options.
There are plenty of opertunities for outside activities such as watersports, photogrophy, biking ect. There are many companies offering discounted rates. There are also many tours around the island such as dolphin, nature and boat. There are cities to visit ot far from teh island so travel is a given.