Addison Snyder

Addison Snyder takes on Disney College Program

Addison Snyder was looking for two key components in a future career when choosing her major – a combination of fun and travel.

Her future goal of working on a cruise ship as an event planner encapsulates both of these criteria, and Addison has worked hard outside of the classroom to make that goal attainable.

One of Addison’s first jobs within her field was an events internship she had at the Memorial Union, and it was her boss there who encouraged her to apply for the Disney College Program last fall. Addison was accepted as a merchandising intern and spent the spring semester working at Disney Springs.

The program is described as a “five-to-seven month program [that] allows participants to network with leaders, take part in personal and career development classes, and build transferable skills such as problem-solving, teamwork, guest service, and effective communication,” according to the Disney College Program website.

“My job at Disney wasn’t events-related, but it still had the hospitality aspect,” Addison said. “Kids would come in and be super smiley, and families would come in and say, ‘Thank you for making our trip better.’ It was nice to get recognition for kind of a thankless job like that.”

While in Florida, Addison also got to take an event operations seminar through Disney, in which she learned the ins and outs of what goes into planning events for the company.

“It was really cool to see what they could do for their events, and that ‘no’ was never their answer,” she said. “After you go to Disney and learn the standards, you start to apply it to everywhere else you go because it truly is the appropriate way you should act when interacting with customers.”

Now back at Iowa State, Addison works as an event intern for the ISU Alumni Center. She said this job is the most hands-on one she’s had so far and that she is the primary contact for customers.

With all of the internship and job experience she’s had, Addison knows what it takes to secure a position within the events field. The main piece of advice she has is to focus on connections through networking.

“Make connections with people that you know have branches elsewhere,” she said. “I would say just putting yourself out there and letting people know what you’re interested in [is important]. Usually people will be like, ‘Oh, I have a friend who does this.’ It’s about putting yourself out there and knowing what your intentions are.”