Hi my name is Mike and Bus2alps is my job. In May 2008, I graduated with honors from Marist College with a degree in Advertising. Most people in my position would have been dreaming of their first big time New York City job at a big time agency. However, my speaker at graduation went into a segment about how everyone should take time off from what they studied in and travel, see the world. I took her advice and decided to take my summer off. With two friends who were willing to take risks and not follow the norm like me, I set off on a cross-country road trip in order to discover what I wanted to do with my life. By the end of the trip, what I discovered was the job offer I had been waiting for from months, sitting in my e-mail inbox. It was from Simon O’Keefe and it included an offer to come back to Florence as a Marketing/Advertising intern.
From my first weeks of college, I knew that I had wanted to study abroad. Spring 2007, this desire came true, as I set foot on European soil, and in the country my paternal family left over seventy years ago. I definitely made the most of my time here, traveling to Interlaken, Amsterdam, Vienna, Bratislava, Dublin, Nice, Barcelona, Munich, Canary Island, Corfu, and most of Italy. The two defining trips I had were to Interlaken and Corfu with Bus2alps. This two were easily the best weekends I had abroad, and were my main reason for sending my resume a year later in search of a job with Bus2alps.
August 29, 2008, 70 years to the day my grandfather stepped foot in America, I stepped foot back in Italy, ready to do what I could have only dreamed of months earlier, travel the world AND use my degree. For the last five months, I have been traveling weekly leading Bus2alps trips and helping coordinate marketing and advertising efforts. The best part of my job is I get to pretend like I am still in college, but since I am part of a company that is in the midst of exponential growth, I am getting incredible insight into how the business world really functions; something I would never have achieved as a petty entry-level scrub back in New York City pulling 12 hour days inputting names into an excel spreadsheet. My friends always tell me how jealous they are of me and how they wish they could be doing what I am doing. I would say out of most of my friends I am the least financially stable one in terms of inherited wealth, and yet I am doing this. Why they can not do this I do not know, but I feel it is because most Americans are not willing to take the risk. I am, and you should too because one day you will look back and wish you had and it will be too late. There is always time to make money, but there is not always the time to make the experiences. Your time here is your chance to make the experiences. Get out and travel, go somewhere you never dreamed. I have no idea where my future is headed or what I will be doing come June. It could be here, it could be back home. I really do not care. Nine months ago I had no idea I would be here, and here I am. Here I am driving speedboats, jumping off cliffs, and snowboarding in the Swiss Alps, all for my job. You never know what is around that corner until you turn it. Don’t be afraid to turn that corner, just do it.