Elena caught up with Matt, 22 and Sam, 21 to see how they are finding their summer working at the American Yacht Club, just outside of New York City. They are spending their summer away on our Work America Ultimate programme.
What does your job role consist of?
Sam: It’s hospitality so what you’d expect really, setting up for events, serving appetisers, that kind of thing.
Matt: Sometimes we have big event here like weddings and parties so it can change quite a bit, but generally setting up tables and then serving people when they arrive.
Did you have any previous experience in hospitality?
S: I’d worked in cafes and stuff so I knew I could do it on some level, I think it’s really more about having good interpersonal skills as that’s the main thing.
M: Same really, bit of previous experience in pubs but not in a place where the standards were as high.
What attracted you to this particular role?
S: For me it was the location as I wanted to be close to New York and it appealed to me that I could get there on my days off and I like working with lots of different people and being busy.
M: I applied for a few other jobs before I found this one, I knew I wanted to work in this field because I had done it before and yeah, the location was good.
What made you want to travel?
S:I had just completed a year abroad and didn’t want to go back home straight away so this was my way of postponing England.
M:For me it was just to have a change of scene and do something a bit different before going into my final year of Uni, the fact I could work out here means I can stay for a matter of months rather than a matter of weeks.
How easy was the process from initialing finding a job to actually getting here?
S:It was ok, I applied early on and took a while to find a position that I suited me so it was a little more stressful the later it got. I opted for the ultimate package which meant BUNAC contacted me directly when jobs became available.
M: Like I said, I applied for a few different jobs and it took a while to get sorted in this place but once I knew where I was heading it was pretty easy.
How have you found the actual role and travelling to and from work?
S: Role was what we’d expected really, there are long hours sometimes as with any job in the service industry.
M: Our house is literally a minute walk from here so getting to work is no problem.
What do you get up to on your days off?
S:We normally head into the city, New York takes about a hour to get to door to door, so we can spend quite a bit of time there. You can also visit the beach but you do have to pay.
M: It’s great because we’re getting beyond the tourist attractions now and getting to explore the individual boroughs.
How have you found your accommodation?
M: Our’s is pretty nice, it’s newly refurbished and so close to work, so it’s really handy. Plus we don’t have to pay rent or anything so we get to keep all our wages.
S:It’s kind of like University living but with nice dorms, theres no kitchen but we get fed twice on the days we work so that’s a bonus.
How do you think this experience will benefit you in the future?
S: I think it shows people that you’re not afraid to get out of your comfort zone and do something a bit different.
M: Also it shows that you can be completely independent and is just a good experience for yourself.
Is there anything you wish you’d known before departing?
S: I would advise people to try and get in touch with other BUNACers beforehand as I was the first to arrive and didn’t know who else was coming.
M: Maybe that theres not that much to do in the surrounding area so be prepared to venture out on your days off.
Matt and Sam are going to be using their thirty day visa at the end of their trip to travel around the USA.
Have Matt and Sam's experiences made you want to experience the USA? Check out our Work America programme and find out how you could be working in the States next summer!
Follow our Travel Intern Elena's journey here.