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Borough college students visit Resorts World career day

Job seekers from colleges throughout Queens participate in a career day event at Resorts World. Photo by Steve Mosco
TimesLedger Newspapers

Life after college is often filled with odd jobs, student loan payments and massive debt, and even if a student lands a job in his or her chosen career, it does not guarantee a substantial payday or even a living wage.

But one well-known company in South Ozone Park decided to prepare young people for life after school by hosting a career day at its facility.

Resorts World Casino New York City welcomed more than 50 students from five area colleges and presented the career seekers with an inside look at a successful business. The students, from colleges including LaGuardia Community College, Long Island Business Institute, New York Institute of Technology, St. John’s University and York College, toured the casino and were given an opportunity to speak with an executive team ready to dish out useful advice on how to make the most of one’s employment.

“If you go to work every day and you are not passionate about it, you are not going to make it, you are not going to succeed,” said Missy Lawrence, vice president of marketing at Resorts World at the Aqueduct Racetrack, at 110-00 Rockaway Blvd. “It cannot just be about your biweekly paycheck — there has to be passion in what you do for a living.”

Lawrence said it is important for young people to learn to say one simple word: sure. That word, according to Lawrence, opens the door to new challenges and shows superiors that an employee is willing to absorb new skills.

“Along the way someone is going to ask you to do something that you’ve never done before,” she said. “You have to learn to say sure because it just might get you to the next level. Opportunities will appear every day and you have to learn to look for them and recognize them when they appear.”

These opportunities should be seized even if it does not seem to match up perfectly to one’s career path, according to Lawrence. Many of the students in attendance understood that notion, including Bernadette Roszik, 21, a junior at St. John’s University in Flushing.

The young woman, originally from the small town of Pepperell, Mass., is working toward a career in fashion, but believes a well-rounded skill set is what employers want.

“I’m going to apply to Resorts World after I graduate,” she said. “I’d like to try something in customer services that allows me to work with many different kinds of people.”

Networking is of the utmost importance in moving a career beyond the ranks of a typical job. Christian Goode, chief financial officer of Resorts World, said networking can act as the catalyst to set off a young person’s career.

“Human capital is our most important resource,” he said. “As we continue to grow we are always looking for the next crop of employees.”

And that next crop of employees is currently working hard at area colleges, according to James Giordano, professor and director of travel, tourism and hospitality management at LaGuardia Community College.

“I tell my students to see themselves as a professional in whatever job they are trying to get,” he said. “This way they don’t have to worry about transitioning from school to the real world.”

Reach reporter Steve Mosco by e-mail at smosco@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4546.

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