Over the summer more than 70 college students completed Corporate Internships at Hyatt properties across the United States. Of those 70 students, 26 were selected to become Hyatt Ambassadors on their individual campuses. These students represent our corporation and are an extension of our college recruiting team. More and more companies are seeing the benefits of having “ambassadors” or student representatives. A company’s recruiter may only be able to visit a college campus a few times during the year, but a student representative is there the entire year and has the ability to keep the company’s brand at the forefront of students’ minds.
In my opinion, students interested in becoming a campus ambassador for a company should consider their decision very heavily. When you decide to represent a brand while on campus, you don’t have the option to just “clock out and go home”. You are the brand’s representative in the classroom, in your dorm room, and even at parties. You are personally selected by a company because you align with them and their brand.
Should you decide not to do your fair share during a group project or perhaps overindulge at a social function, your actions now not only are a reflection on your personal brand; it’s also a reflection on the corporate brand you represent.
Living the Brand
Actress Jennifer Aniston is one of many celebrities that are paid to represent a specific brand. One of the brands she represents is “Smart Water”. Although she is featured in “Smart Water” print ads, she is also photographed constantly by paparazzi when she is not working. I always find it funny that when the paparazzi “catch” her in airports, on the street, on vacation, or in other various settings, if she’s carrying or drinking a bottle of water, it’s always “Smart Water”. As a result, the brand receives informal advertising and subliminal reinforcement with those who see the paparazzi photos that Jennifer Aniston doesn’t just represent “Smart Water”; it is part of her everyday life.
I feel it’s the same for a campus ambassador. I’m not saying that campus ambassadors need to wear their company branded attire every day or always have the company’s logo front and center. Ultimately, I am encouraging you to consider that once you sign on to represent a company on your campus, you have to live the brand and the image it represents, which is why it’s important to ensure that a company’s mission, goals and values align with your own.
Lastly, if you are going to be a company’s ambassador, please be sure that this is the company that you want to work for after college, or where you see the potential of a long-term professional relationship. Last semester, I interviewed the ambassador of another hotel company and just didn’t understand how a student could stand up in front of their peers and say positive things about an organization, encourage others to apply for opportunities within the organization, but then interview with me, their organization’s often perceived “competitor”.
There’s a ton of responsiblity for those that hold the title of Campus Ambassador. Their credibility on campus depends upon how genuine, passionate, and loyal they are to the brand they represent. This is why I encourage those who are interested in the role to consider the decision carefully, recognizing that being a Campus Ambassador is more than a title, it’s a lifestyle.
Ronisha is one of Hyatt’s College Recruiting Managers. Hyatt’s College Recruiters visit more than 30 college campuses each year recruiting top talent at hospitality programs across the country. A graduate of The Ohio State University, Ronisha begin her Hyatt career as a Human Resources Corporate Management Trainee. During her ten years with Hyatt, she has worked at Hyatt Hotels in Orlando, Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey. To learn more about opportunities with Hyatt please visit hyatt.jobs, follow Hyatt on twitter @hyattcareers, become a Hyatt Facebook fan at Hyatt Hotels and Resorts Careers and follow the Campus Recruiter blog at hyattrecruiting.blogspot.com.