I'm planning on working as a ride op the summer I graduate high school at CP.
GM of an amusement park is exactly what I'd love to do. I mean there are over a 100 amusement parks across the US, odds are if I worked hard I could get myself into one of those parks.
Another thing is that since most companies promote from within its almost unheard of for a fresh college grad who has never worked with the company to get a position that a seasoned employee is applying for as well. *** Edited 3/25/2005 1:31:12 PM UTC by XFlight***
I'm pretty sure Cedar Fair parks still have marketing and sales audit internship positions that would be related to a business degree.
Working at CP in the Summers is definitely a good start. You should also look into the Walt Disney World College Program as well. (I've heard mixed reviews of it, but like anything else, I imagine you get out of it what you put into it...)
See, I've always beeen interested in running either a theme park or a ski resort.
The problem is that if I get a degree in either ski resort management or theme park management, what if I don't get a job? It's not a flexible degree I could use for another job if all else fails. I've gotten the impression you do have to work your way up, so I'll start with CP when I graduate high school and see how it goes.
I was thinking of just going for business or marketinga and then getting my MBA, and at the same time, each summer working at an amusement park for experience.
I'd preferably want to go to a college either out west or in Vermont so I can ski throughout the winter, and then go to a park in the summer.
Thanks for the info!
Unless you're in a very technical (or medical) field, your college major means less and less as your career progresses. My major was in journalism (PR track), but I've spent most of my career in IT training (or, "performance management" as we like to call it now <g>.)
Unless you have your heart set on marketing, I'd suggest you look at other options for a "generic" business major. Considered the "glamour" business major, there are a lot of marketing graduates for each available job. Finance or business operations are good to consider as well. (Ohio State's Fisher College of Business offers an "operations management" program that I've been impressed with...it provides a great survey of all aspects of business ops. that would be useful in any field you wanted to pursue.)
I'd still consider the WDW college program for a quarter. I've worked with a few colleagues who did the program and both said having it on their resume opened a lot of doors. One guy told me that nearly 15 years later, every interviewer still always asks about it!
PRIDE - PASSION - PERFORMANCE
It helped me become GM of one of the country's top 10 FEC's, Enchanted Castle - Lombard, Illinois.
Take PRIDE in all of your efforts. Start wherever you can (usually at the base like I did at SFGAm in 1986). NEVER place yourself above a task no matter how unflattering it might be.
You have to have a true PASSION for this kind of work. It is long, grueling hours at times, but pays you back in knowing you have entertained thousands or millions of people. You will truly make an impact on people's lives!
PERFORM hard! Bust your behind to be recognized as a self-motivated leader. Be assertive, not arrogant. You are "competing" with dozens or hundreds of co-workers who may share the same goal as you.
Schooling IS important! I only was able to achieve an Associate's degree, but education is a MUST!
Overall, it's not easy getting to the top! Be prepared! Check out my progression...
1986 - Yukon Yahoo operator at SFGAm ($3.35/hr)
1987-8 LEAD of Power Dive, Orbit, Log Run, Am Eagle
1989 - Operations Trainer (seasonal) then Supervisor
1990-1 Seasonal Supervisor
1992-6 F/T Sup; opened Batman-The Ride, Viper
1996 - Old Indiana Personnel Administrator
2001* - Returned to industry as GM of Block Party in Indianapolis.
2002 - Hired on with Trails Entertainment. Became GM of EC within about a year.
* Left the industry for a while after Old Indiana's accident caused park shutdown. Was GM of a hotel and Reg Mgr for a loan company during this time.
Again, it's NOT easy getting to the top. I quote the lead singer of The Oak Ridge Boys, "You appreciate the mountaintops when you struggle through a few valleys".
Good Luck and Best Wishes!
BTW, I am still at the Castle and invite you all out if you're in the Chicago area. Ask for me! *** Edited 3/25/2005 8:24:33 PM UTC by CastleKing***
That said, you are better off spending summers at a park and getting to know the right folks than trying to come out of college with a degree but no experience. It is a tight knit group.
Ride of Steel...if you want a high paying job you may want to look outside the amusement industry. Entry level full-time management isn't exactly going to make you rich.
I hear that you are dressing up as the bunny on Sunday!
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