Monday, June 14, 2010

Jessica Parrot '04

VIP Services Representative,
Treasure Island Resort & Casino

q: What do you do?

a: Manage exclusive services for "high-roller" guests at a AAA Four Diamond hotel on the Vegas strip. I check them in, answer questions, and set up them up with limos, dinners, shows, VIP lounge, and so on.
q: What's your favorite part of the job?
a: Seeing Vegas from the casino side, which is driven by financial motivation, marketing and psychology. It is a business continually improving its ability to learn what will make people spend their money. I also love all of my co-workers.
q: What's the greatest challenge?
a: Guests that are not classified as VIP players but ask to use our services. This is tricky because we want to treat all guests like royalty, but we need to keep VIP services available only to our best customers. We have to be diplomatic.
q: Do you stay in touch with any other UCF hospitality alums?
a: Here in Vegas, I've had the pleasure to get together with Don Richardson '89, after discovering him through this blog.
q: Outside're most likely to be seen?
a: Hiking in Red Rock Canyon, climbing Mount Charleston, boating on Lake Mead or doing Bikram yoga. Occasionally I will go to the hotel pools but prefer to relax away from the strip when I'm not working. The non-stop party you see on T.V. is reality. Where I live is totally different; it's suburbia, similar to Waterford Lakes.
q: Your biggest accomplishment since graduating, outside your career?
a: Having the courage to go for it! I moved to a new city where I didn't know anyone and had no guarantees. It taught me a lot about myself.
q: How did UCF prepare you for what you do?
a: The classes teach you about working with people and building relationships. You also get a well-rounded foundation of knowledge about the industry.
q: Your favorite class?
a: The two classes I took with Dr. William Fisher. One was Restaurant Management. He is so engaging.
q: How could the hospitality program have been better?
a: With the addition of more focused classes, specifically Casino Management. Also it would be helpful to have a course like "foreign language for tourism" to learn key phrases to communicate with tourists from a variety of countries. It could also explain worldwide traditions and customs. For instance, our casino does not use $50.00 bills because they are considered bad luck. The Wynn Las Vegas, across the street, does not have a fourth floor due to tetraphobia, an Asian superstition associating the number four with death.
q: A UCF memory?
a: Study abroad at the Universite d'Angers, France. The other Rosen College students and I met people from all over the world, and got to see hospitality from a European perspective. Another unforgettable time is when my sorority ΔΓ partnered with the ΔΥ fraternity for Homecoming. It was like a scene from a movie when we won!
q: Favorite meal in Orlando?
a: The lobster ravioli at Bravissimo. Also, Bizzarro's Famous NY Pizza on the boardwalk in Indialantic.
q: On your iPod?
a: The whole gamut, so I have music to match my mood....including country, punk, emo, oldies, reggae and dance music.
q: Little known fact about you?
a: I studied Tae Kwon Do for five years and earned my Black Belt.

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