Why Internships Change Everything

 Photo from travelandleaisure.com

Photo from travelandleaisure.com

By: Camille Bartsch, GWWIB Ambassador

     People always ask me, “you’re a freshman, how could you possible know, this specifically, what you want to do?” My name is Camille Bartsch, and I am a Freshman in the School of Business dual concentrating in Marketing and Sports, Event, and Hospitality Management. I grew up right outside of Burlington, Vermont, and that’s why I know Sports Marketing is exactly what I want to do.

    Tucked away in the rolling Green Mountains of Vermont is Stowe Mountain Resort, a luxury, four-season resort dedicated to the best skiing and lodging on the East Coast. It is said, “if you can ski the east, you can ski anywhere.” Skiing is the livelihood of Vermont, and a good part of mine. Like many winter resorts around the country, there is a transition from a sole focus on winter, to a four-season resort to protect the company from bad winters. I know for Vermont, a bad winter can have an astounding impact on tourism, which directly impacts the local economy and livelihood of small businesses. Before my senior year in high school I served as a Marketing and Sales Intern to help with social media and strategy of the launch of the summer zipline and tree-top ropes course.

    Stowe is everything we dream of when we think of “quintessential New England,” and selling that picturesque ideal is just as fun as it sounds. Stowe is a premier resort that focuses their target market on the Montreal, New York, and European market. I learned that a company’s target market determines the brand, culture, and aesthetic. Because of this high end clientele, Stowe is sponsored by Mercedes-Benz, has exclusive Stowe Mountain Club membership, and gives every skier a world-class experience on the slopes.

    When I walked into my internship, I was still questioning if I wanted to be in business. Stowe Mountain completely reaffirmed my interest in business, and allowed me to discover my interest in lifestyle leisure branding. Throughout my seven months interning, I worked on Stowe’s social media, helped with the launch of the zip line, increased season pass sales at the collegiate level, fleshed out a customer face, worked with brand ambassadors, and organized over ten years of press clippings into archives.

Most importantly, I learned how to sell. Getting out with the team at the office and walking the grounds to talk to customers, builders, and workers made me more connected to the company and the people that make the company run. Stowe was just the beginning of my interest in the sports marketing field, and I can’t wait to find more opportunities here at GW to explore my interest. My mentor Shawn would always say, “what could be better than selling fun?”