By Brooklyn Brown
Hannah Broyer is a talent acquisition coordinator at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort. She graduated from Western Carolina University in May of 2023 with a degree in communication and a minor in marketing.
Broyer secured her position through Harrah’s Cherokee Casino’s internship program. The casino is one of the top economic drivers in Western North Carolina, both for generating revenue and offering employment.
Leeann Bridges, regional vice president of human resources at the casino for more than 22 years, wants WCU students to take advantage of its internship program, specifically for career opportunities.
“We pretty much open up all of our departments for internships. Marketing and finance, operations, security, human resources, hotel, and food and beverage are the areas that we are most focused on,” Bridges said.
“Our goal with our internship programs is to ultimately get those folks into a permanent position with us. You can come in here and have a 20-, 30-year career if you want it, and if not, you're gonna learn some very valuable skills that you can take with you wherever you go.”
Broyer had a successful internship in the casino’s marketing department, leading to permanent employment. “I think it's important for Western students to know how much of an impact they can have here at the casino,” she said.
“I walked in as just a senior in college and I've been able to enact change and bring a new perspective when it comes to marketing, business, and even recruiting and employment. You can have a bigger influence here than you might think.”
Broyer began her position in June, directly after graduation, but her internship gave her a leg up.
“My favorite part of this position is being the first person that these new candidates see,” she said. “I get to help them with their process and it is kind of full circle. I like knowing that I just helped that person get a job.”
The casino’s internship program offers three different tracks: a three-month spring or fall internship, or an eight-week summer internship.
Anyone 21 years of age in their junior or senior year, or graduated within the past six months, is eligible to apply.