I was exposed to the various aspects of food and beverage which includes: casual a la carte dining, banquets and events. I took on several supervisory roles which focused primarily on supervising the dining room or banquet operations teams and assisting our Food & Beverage or Catering & Conference Service Managers. I had the opportunity to work closely with managerial positions and learn how to perform some of their tasks (e.g. setup, observing BEOs, delegating tasks to employees, resetting rooms, and billing).
I believe that one of my greatest accomplishments is having the ability to lead. I have been put in leadership positions before, but I feel after having so many opportunities at Aspen Meadows Resort in different departments around the food and beverage industry (e.g. food hubs, receptions, lunches and break hubs), I have gained social skills (e.g delegating tasks, communication, and interacting with the highly valued clientele) that will help me as I continue my professional career path as well as my academic career path. From having the opportunity to lead, it has help me continue to improve my leadership skills as a supervisor. Some social skills I improved on were active listening, eye contact, and speaking clearly when giving instructions. So far from being an intern at Aspen Meadows for only a month, I feel confident in my abilities to be a great coworker as well as a leader as I continue my career path.
From this internship, I have learned that if there are people you may not work well with, there are ways to change how you communicate and lead to improve that working relationship. It is not worth it to give up and not try to work with the people who frustrate you, because it is all a learning experience and a great social skill to gain. Instead of giving up I confronted the issue, communicated, and found a resolution to the problem. Another lesson I learned is that it is okay to not know something and to ask questions. when I found myself getting upset over small tasks for my job(e.g. not knowing the location of napkins or how to do breakfast set up) it would make me feel like I wasn’t good enough as a worker or leader. Instead of handing my jobs to someone else, I asked questions whether that be to my coworkers or supervisors. Once I asked the question, I gained the ability to locate needed items or have the knowledge to setup an area for an event. I am now able to do these tasks on my own because I got out of my comfort zone and asked questions. Everything I do in my internship is a learning experience so asking questions is essential, especially in the food and beverage industry!
What advice would you give?
Do not be afraid to take a chance. I had been looking at Aspen Meadows for a year and a half before actually applying for my internship position. I did not think that I was going to do an internship this summer either, but I am glad I did. I was terrified of moving all the way from Minnesota to Colorado without any of my friends or family near me. However, I would not change this experience for anything, because this has been the best couple months for me personally and professionally. I have never experienced such a great supervisory crew and a meticulously planned three-day training. You can only have these experiences once in a lifetime and we, as Iowa State students, are so lucky to have so many opportunities to gain and explore different internships at the multiple career fairs. So please, do not be afraid to take a risk and try to experience something new in a completely different place, you never know, maybe it will become your new home.