Camelback Lodge & Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark
Tannersville, Pennsylvania - USA
Featured in "World Waterpark Magazine," Jaunary 2018
WHAT IS YOUR EDUCATION AND PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE?
I am a graduate of Stroudsburg High School as of 2016. Currently, I am enrolled at Northampton Community College in pursuit of an associate’s degree in criminal justice and would like to work toward a bachelor’s degree. I am an Aquatics Lead/Supervisor and an Ellis & Associates Instructor at Camelback Lodge & Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark.
WHAT CERTIFICATION OR LICENSING DO YOU HAVE?
I am VanGuard certified and I have my Ellis & Associates Instructor License.
WHAT MADE YOU GO INTO THIS FIELD?
When I was applying at Camelback, my mother suggested I should be a lifeguard. Ever since I got hired at Camelback, I do not regret taking that suggestion my mother gave me. While I was at WWA, it made me want to take an in-depth look into the industry. There were so many people and things that inspired me to purse the industry. It was an eye-opening experience.
WHAT ASPECT OF THE WATERPARK INDUSTRY DO YOU LIKE BEST?
The aspect of the waterpark industry I like best is being able to work with all the different associates on our team. I like to help them with becoming the best professional young adults they deserve to be. I want them to succeed in the career path they choose, but most of all I want to help them be a leader. Providing great guest service is another favorite thing about the industry. To be able to make memories with the guest and for the guest is amazing.
WHO HAS MOST INSPIRED YOU IN YOUR CAREER SO FAR?
Josh Martinez. He has been my mentor/role model since he became the Director of Aquatics for Aquatopia. He has inspired me to be a better leader than I was when I met him. Also, he is the leader I aspire to be.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE GREATEST CHALLENGE IN YOUR WATERPARK CAREER SO FAR?
The greatest challenge I have faced is coming from a non-existent background of the waterpark industry, starting out as a lifeguard and moving into a position of leadership. Having no prior experience in leadership created many different challenges that I had to handle and learn from. To overcome that challenge of being a leader, I looked up to Josh and the management team. They are leaders I would follow and leaders I would like to be.
HOW DO YOU KEEP FOCUSED AND MOTIVATED?
I always modeled my mother’s work ethic. She is the definition of someone who has true grit. It keeps me focused to complete the task at hand. I also am motivated by my team. I am surrounded by innovative individuals/leaders that always want the best out of me and everyone on our team.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE A FELLOW YOUNG LEADER WHO IS INTERESTED IN WORKING IN THE WATERPARK INDUSTRY?
“The road to being a leader is never paved alone.” This simply means: always try to help out everyone around you to be a leader. Be their mentor and help them succeed with their dreams. Be their guide to the unclear road of being a leader.
WHAT BOOKS OR PUBLICATIONS DO YOU RELY ON MOST FOR INSPIRATION OR MOTIVATION?
I watch Ted Talks about leadership and I read Forbes
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF YOUR JOB?
My favorite part about my job is operations. Aquatic operations are always changing and evolving. You always have to be ahead of the game to make sure you have a successful operation. Again, providing great guest service is a second favorite part of the job and the industry. Also, the new knowledge that can be learned on the job or from those around you. There is always something to learn within the aquatics industry as a whole.
WHAT GOALS HAVE YOU SET FOR YOURSELF AND WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE IN A FEW YEARS?
I want to be an Aquatics Section Manager for my facility or become an Ellis auditor in the near future. In a few years, I would like to become a Manager or Director of Aquatics.
HOW DID YOU FIRST GET INVOLVED WITH THE WWA?
I was nominated by my management team for being a leader. They told me about the Chris Stuart Emerging Leaders Scholarship Award for WWA and told me to apply for it. I was happy to be selected for the 2017 scholarship.
WHAT IS SOMETHING INTERESTING ABOUT YOU THAT FEW KNOW OR WOULD GUESS?
Working at Aquatopia is my first job and I was hired at age 17. My first position was a Water Park Attendant and I have worked my way up since then. Leadership did not come naturally to me. Working hard and absorbing the knowledge around me has helped shape me into who I am today.