Getting Cooked in the Florida Heat

4531535_sWhen I first moved to Ocala, Florida, I took the AC for granted. I had just started a job in the area after moving from Washington, D.C. I had recently graduated from university and this was my first big boy job. I moved out of my parents’ house and even though my mom hated that I was moving down to Florida (a million miles away from her, apparently), she was proud of me for making a move for myself. It was my first time out of the house. I had stayed home during my college years to help around the house.

I applied to several jobs a few months before graduating, but none of them would take in Washington. I made it to interviews, but I never made it past the second round. So, I decided to give a couple of jobs out-of-state a shot just to see if anything would come of it. And it did. I got a job in Florida after interviewing with them through Skype, they asked me to fly down one week to meet me in person. They paid for my flight, which was really nice and they offered me the job after giving me a mini tour of the area and the company.

So, I moved down about a month later once I had graduated and my parents gave me the money for a down payment for a studio. I loved the independence, but I did really miss my family. And I adopted two stray cats who would hang about my apartment front door. I think their family had left without them and it broke my heart. So I took them in.

35461506_sI used to leave my AC on during the day for my cats and because I was told you can get mold by not having your AC on. I didn’t have a landlord because I had bought my studio, so when the AC broke down I had no idea what to do. I looked all over for quick service, but everyone quoted me on coming out a few days after. I couldn’t bear the heat, I truly felt as though I were melting. So, I called Cook’s Air Conditioning & Heating Specialists. They were the most helpful. They came out the same day and took care of my AC. And they put me on their Gold membership plan to come and check it regularly. I have never been more grateful to a repair man in my life!

Giving Your Hotel An Upgrade

31355406_sI started off as a hotel concierge. It was my first job out of high school and I used the money to put myself through college. My mother couldn’t afford to help me pay for my college because she had debts of her own to cover. And I, unfortunately, had to take out student loans to cover my tuition. Thankfully, I was still able to live with my parents in Binghamton while I attended Binghamton University. I got my BS in Business Administration, and by the time I had graduated I had also managed to pay off my loans. I was using all the money I made from my hotel work to pay for the tuition.

Once I got my degree, I was also given a promotion in the hotel to become an assistant general manager before making the jump to general manager in a year. I spent a few more years there collecting as much money as I could while I lived with my mother and helped her out here and there. I wanted to save up to go to Cornell to get my master’s in hospitality management. I was the events manager by my fourth year with the hotel. My mother passed away that year and I decided that it was now or never for me to pursue my dream of getting my master’s. I sold the house and used my mom’s life insurance to pay off her debts. I kept the remaining amount to buy myself a studio in Ithaca and I left to work at the Statler Hotel at Cornell University.

27109894_s I didn’t get accepted to the program the first two times I tried, but I did my third time around. I started working for the hotel as their event planner. But once I got into the program, I was also given the opportunity to be an assistant hotel manager. I graduated two years later and I was promoted to the hotel manager. One of the first tasks I undertook as the hotel manager was changing the television and air conditioning equipment that needed upgrades. MDM Commercial offered us the best pricing for LG televisions and offered us the most competitive prices for air conditioning units.

Today, I am still in charge at Statler and I am loving every moment of it. I am lucky to have found my calling and I am proud to be part of the Cornell family.