Cruise connection leads to internship

ComArtSci Senior Alexandra Gise (second from left) is onboard cruise ship Enchanted Princess working as an intern for Princess Cruises. She worked with three Spartan alumni leading the team producing a branded content program. Pictured with Gise are fellow Spartans Brian O’Connor, head of communications for Princess and president of the ComArtSci Alumni Board, Michael Seel, manager inaugural events for Princess, and Eric Blomberg, with Wilson Dow Group, a Chicago-based live events and full-service video production company owned and operated by Spartan alumnus Steve Wilson.

ComArtSci senior Alexandra “Alex” Gise essentially grew up sailing vacations on Princess Cruises with her family.

Her grandmother is the most traveled guest on Princess Cruises globally, having sailed more than 2,500 days at sea on over 281 voyages.

“Princess Cruises has allowed me to have unforgettable experiences alongside my family such as swimming with jelly fish in the Caribbean, going dog sled riding in Alaska, making authentic Mexican food in Cabo and so much more,” Gise said.

When Brian O’Connor, vice president of communications for Princess and ComArtSci alumni board president, was on campus in September for a ComArtSci alumni board meeting, he appeared on a panel discussion in one of Gise’s classes.

Gise wanted to connect with O’Connor to share her experience sailing on 15 cruises with Princess, and mention that it inspired her to pursue a career in the cruise industry.

When O’Connor heard about it, he hired her as an intern on the spot.

“We produced a feature length program presenting our premium cruise vacation brand and the time-honored, maritime tradition of a cruise ship naming ceremony,” O’Connor said. “As executive producer, I curated a team of video production professionals. I needed production assistants who could find their way around a cruise ship easily and efficiently. The fact that Alex had years of experience on our ships and had the distinct advantage of being a Spartan got my attention.

“Alex integrated into our production team from East Lansing and was eager to learn. While on the ship in South Florida, she contributed to the success of the multi-camera production. Alex also makes a cameo appearance in the program.”

For Gise, the internship that took place in early November has made a lasting impact.

“My experience was an unforgettable and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn in such a hands-on environment for the project being worked on,” Gise said.

Tune-in for the premier of “Our World, Enchanted” – the naming ceremony of Enchanted Princess at 4 p.m. eastern on Dec 13.

Watch here