I still remember my very first interview at Marcus Theaters, Westown Cinemas in Waukesha, WI. I was in high school then, and my mom took me to a movie theater that was only five minutes from our house. While she waited in the lobby area near the concession stand, I went into a small office for an interview with the manager.
He hired me on the spot as an usher.
I learned what really happens behind-the-scenes in a movie theater. I worked with other ushers to keep the lobby and theaters clean before, during, and after each show. I swept away popcorn, ripped tickets, and helped out at the concession stand. Better yet, I had the power to kick people out who tried sneaking in without a ticket.
It was a fun experience–but I faced some challenges. The other ushers bullied me. They gave me the most boring jobs, like keeping track of tickets when customers entered the lobby. It was just like middle school, when I was teased because of my hearing loss and being a minority.
I kept my chin up and refused to let it bother me. Eventually, the managers noticed I was great at greeting customers and made sure the other ushers treated me fairly. Their approval and consideration made me work hard and improve, despite the social obstacles.
Eventually, I received enough positive feedback from moviegoers that I became an employee of the month. I never felt so proud to earn that recognition–at my first job, no less!
By stepping out of my comfort zone and trying a job that intimidated me, I reached a milestone I never would have considered.
I hope you all find my first job an inspiration to try something new–even if it scares you. Thanks for reading!
Edited by Stephanie Stott, Staff Writer