Spotlight on youth: All aboard a program giving youth "real world" experience

ANCHORAGE (KTUU) There are many ways to take in Alaska's beauty. Either by boat, by plane and on this particular day, it was by train.

Alaska Railroad youth tour guide Sydnee Card on duty.

We followed along with tour guide Sydnee Card as she welcomed guests aboard the Alaska Railroad..

The day's trip began in Anchorage with a stop in Girdwood and then it was on to Seward.

Sydnee did some final checks before finally taking off.

She became interested in becoming a tour guide after seeing her sister go through the program. Once selected, students are trained during the spring semester of their junior and senior year to be tour guides for the summer.

"It's a hard class for a reason, but it's so worth it because it prepares you for the real world," she said.

Sydnee said one of the best parts about her job is seeing guests reactions.

"My favorite is on the coastals when trail glacier and you talk about it and everyone zooms to the window and takes pictures and they love it,"said Card.

She also said becoming a tour guide has not only given her real world experience, but it's also allowed her to appreciate the beauty in her own backyard.

"It's always their first time to see it and it's so fun to see their first reaction mostly because they've never seen it before," she added.

Not to mention, Sydnee's a big part of keeping the operation going. Her summers may be spent working, but with a view like hers, it's hard to call it "work."

If you're interested in the youth tour guide program, check with your local school's counselors for an application. You also have to have at least a 2.5 GPA to get started.

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