Ilana Berman graduated in 2015 with a B.S. in Hotel and Tourism Management, with a concentration in Tourism Development and a minor in Spanish. Since she graduated, she has worked for the Walt Disney Company. In this post, she tells us more about her professional journey.
January 29, 2020
Tisch Center Alumni Spotlight: Ilana Berman, the Walt Disney Company
What has your journey been like after graduating from NYU?
After I graduated from NYU I moved to Orlando, Florida for a professional internship in Travel Agency Sales at the Walt Disney Company. I have been with the company ever since and have had the opportunity to explore a few different roles. After my internship I became a Guest Experience Manager at the front office of a couple different resorts. I currently work in event services at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort.
Can you talk about your current role at Walt Disney World?
As an Event Services Manager, my role consists of planning meetings and conventions at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Our convention center is the largest at Walt Disney World with over 220,000 square feet of meeting space. We work with corporations and associations to plan their meetings and do a lot of fun things such as events in the theme parks and adding uniquely Disney entertainment elements. We have the opportunity to partner with different teams at the resort while assisting our clients with all aspects of their event including room blocks, meeting space, transportation and purchasing theme park tickets. It’s a fun role as I work with multiple groups and every day is a new experience.
What are you passionate about in the work that you do?
I am proud to work for a company with such an incredible legacy and sharing that passion with our guests. I really love hearing a client’s ideas, collaborating with our partners and then seeing the final product come together. It’s interesting to conceptualize an event and then ultimately see it successfully executed.
In what ways has your NYU experience had an impact on your career and shaped who you are today?
I look back very fondly on my time at NYU. There is truly no better place to study and experience the hospitality industry in the world than New York City. I’m grateful to be able to apply the knowledge I gained from NYU to my current role. The internships opportunities I had prepared me well and guided my career path. Working on the NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference my senior year is what solidified my love for the events industry.
What career advice would you give to NYU students?
Don’t be afraid to take risks. When you graduate the first job you have may be different than you anticipated, but it’s important to keep an open mind and be patient in building your career. Things don’t happen overnight; so don’t be afraid to take a chance with an internship or role that may be out of your comfort zone. You never know what you may learn and where that path may take you.