All throughout high school, Madlin Cowart knew she wanted to live in New York City. In June of 2010, after graduating in Atlanta, Madlin moved to New York City with no jobs lined up. “I went around everywhere applying for jobs…anywhere because, even if it’s something I don’t 100 percent like, all I need right now is money."
The first to respond to Madlin’s many applications was Chipotle where she immediately took a position. During her first week and a half of employment, two patrons offered Madlin opportunities to interview with their companies. The first was with Abercrombie and the second was with Crosby Street Hotel. Madlin decided both of these were better than fast food and took both jobs.
For the following four months, Madlin worked a grueling schedule. Her day would “start” with her time at Abercrombie working from 9am to 2pm. She would then go home, arriving around 3pm and sleep until 10pm when she would wake up and head to the hotel to work from 11pm to 7am. ”Those three or four months were probably the most miserable of my life… My sleeping patterns were off, my eating patterns were not right… During the day I couldn’t sleep…"
This overload eventually caused Madlin to move back to Atlanta. While at home, Madlin knew her time in New York was not over. She met up with a youth group leader from her church that informed her of a new church opening in New York City. After two months Madlin of being home, she moved back to the Big City. She began focusing more on her church life and took her position back with hotel, only this time working the day shift.
Madlin has stayed in the hospitality industry, since. “I never knew that I would have liked working in hospitality… [but since] I started working in it is when I actually started falling in love with it.” Madlin works in the front office, fulfilling the needs and requests of guests.
For now, Madlin couldn’t imagine herself anywhere else. “I’m so thankful I even have the chance to live here."
Photographed by John Castillo