Internships abound for interested students
For many students, finding and completing an internship is the worst experience of their collegiate career. All the good ones are too hard to get, and the ones leftover are full-time, unpaid and don’t have opportunities to be hired afterward.
Then there’s Park City.
Interns in Park City spend their days among the mountains, getting paid to work in their specific field with the chance to advance to a full-time position once they’re done.
With three ski resorts and myriad other small businesses, Park City plays host to interns by the handful, especially during summer and winter semesters. Deer Valley, Park City Mountain Resort and The Canyons all employ interns in a variety of disciplines.
"We have an internship coordinator in the human resources office and her job is to see if we can match up folks who are looking for an internship with a position here that best suits their area of study," said Kim Mayhew, Director of Human Resources at Deer Valley. "We don’t create positions for them. They’re working in a real position earning a real wage."
Deer Valley has had interns from all over the United States, including recent interns from Vermont, Massachusetts, South Carolina, Florida, California, Colorado and, of course, Utah.
Interested interns are matched with a department at the resort depending on their specific area of study. Students studying early childhood development can work in the children’s center, while a resort management major could work next to the people in charge of the entire resort. Deer Valley has also had interns in park, recreation and tourism, recreation management, and general hospitality management.
The internships are generally full-time jobs, paid as seasonal employees.
At PCMR, interns are paid similarly to Deer Valley, but tend to be part-time, although full-time positions are available.
PCMR Resources Recruiter Linda Cooley said that although they don’t have a summer internship program, they take interns when extra help is needed. They do, however, run a program in the winter.
"We generally hire two to three summer interns, but others might be using their current job toward internship credit at school and we just don’t know about it," Cooley said. "Currently we don’t need any interns, but they’re usually people who have contacted us through their school’s internship department, frequently in marketing, sales, or food and beverage."
Cooley also said that internships at the resorts are a great way to feel out what the industry is like while having fun and getting school credit, all on top of getting paid.
"We have a lot of people in the marketing and recreation industry who want to get their foot in the door and see what it’s like," she said. "It also gives us a chance to meet some great employees and train them for a position in hopes they want to stay with the company."
Much like the other resorts, The Canyons uses interns both during the summer and winter seasons as paid employees.
"We do take interns, although it’s not an extremely formal program," said Nikki Allen, human resources coordinator at The Canyons. "But we take interns for mountain operations, management, in the hotels, human resources, and we’re currently looking to fill the human resources one and the mountain management one."
Angela Eckstein, Communication and Training Coordinator at Brigham Young University, said BYU has sent interns to work in several different Park City businesses, including at the resorts, museums, television stations and physical therapy clinics.
"We have some providers that the law school interacts with," she said. "We’ve also had students work in plant and animal science, recreation management, youth leadership, exercise sciences, history, business management, communications and nursing. And that’s probably not an all-encompassing list, either."
Representatives from the University of Utah reported similar internship placements.
"All of our internships are handled by individual departments, but there are general requirements," Eckstein said. "It must be applicable to the student’s specific field of study and be at a high level, where you’d have to have schooling or a degree."
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Summit County Attorney Margaret Olson has decried what she called a lenient sentence in a child sex abuse case in which a 20-year-old reportedly attempted to impregnate a 12-year-old. The perpetrator was sentenced to 20 days in jail and 10 years of probation.