Elizabeth Shabada

This past summer, I had the opportunity of interning at an international Resort & Spa in Hainan, China with the help of CRCC Asia. Not only did this internship help me gain valuable experience, improve and develop my skills, and teach me about the hotel industry firsthand, but it was also an amazing time spent making long-term friendships and memories. It allowed me to test the waters of one of the many industries related to my university schooling and has ultimately allowed me to further pave my future career path.

After my first year at Ryerson University in the Hospitality and Tourism program, I decided that an internship would be the perfect way to gain some hands-on experience and ensure that I was truly taking the right program in school. I initially signed up for the Shanghai 2 month summer internship program at a travel agency, however, when CRCC Asia later offered the hospitality internship in Hainan, China, I knew that it was more suited for me. I was a bit worried that my age (I was 18 turning 19 at the time) and my lack of experience would hinder my chances of even obtaining an internship at the many prestigious resorts in Hong Kong. However, CRCC assured me that I would still fit in and they definitely delivered. After an initial interview with them and a phone interview with the Resort & Spa, I was offered a position as a Guest Relations Officer. Working in the Front Office was my ideal choice so I was very excited.

From the moment I arrived in China and saw Stephanie, a local resident of Hong Kong who worked for CRCC, picking me up at the airport, I felt completely supported and relieved. Hannah, my CRCC program coordinator was amazing at helping us, providing support, taking us on social and cultural events, and following-up to ensure we all had an excellent internship experience. CRCC also picked a wonderful apartment for us to live in and right beside Dadonghai beach!

My internship at the Resort & Spa could not have been better! I enjoyed my position, which consisted mainly of talking and supporting foreign guests, ordering items to rooms, checking VIP rooms, and filling out reports. My co-workers were so nice and helpful and I still keep in touch with them. I felt like I was really part of a team and I even attended many work outings and activities such as laser tag, KTV, beach games, and a local show. I had an amazing experience!

I also really enjoyed getting to know and become long-term friends with the other CRCC interns. They are from all over the world and it was great having people around that have the same goals and interests as you.

As I enter the second semester of my second year of university, I am happy that I have my hands-on hotel experience to supplement what I’m learning about hospitality and tourism in class. Not only do I know more about hotels, but I also have learned a great deal about China and Chinese culture, which I appreciate. It has opened up my mind about the world, especially about a wonderful country with so many opportunities. CRCC Asia allowed me to have this wonderful experience and I would definitely do it again if I had the chance.