Six Flags Over Georgia

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There’s a man working at Six Flags Over Georgia in Austell, who claims to have the best job in North America. Who could pass up an opportunity to find out why? Not us! And it turns out there are a lot of amazing jobs in this place. For example, they actually have jobs riding rides! And if you want to set yourself up for a job like this, it’ll help to learn some science. You’ll find out why. Oh, and we’ll ride a coaster or two too!

Adrenaline Rush

Adrenaline Rush

We find out why people love riding roller coasters (and why some don’t) from a physiological standpoint. And that means understanding the basics of an Adrenaline Rush.

Transfer of Energy and Angular Momentum

Transfer of Energy and Angular Momentum

In addition to an Adrenaline Rush, there are a lot of physics involved in making rollercoasters so much fun to ride. The Transfer of Energy and Angular Momentum are two of the keys.

Presidential Pathways

Special Thanks To

Brianna Warren, Molly Buckner, Dale Ketzel, Mitch Fielder, Kevin Mathews, Jamaal Teagle, Heather Clark, Emily Murray, Charlie Gates, Robb Alvey

Six Flags Over GA

VO

Can I get a minute? I'm not feeling so good.

Welcome to another episode of Fast Forward. Today we're just a few miles outside of Atlanta visiting Six Flags Over Georgia. And there's someone I want you to meet...

DALE

Hi I'm Dale, and no matter what you hear throughout the rest of this series I have the best job in North America.

VO

Yep, being President of Six Flags Over Georgia is a pretty amazing job. It means all summer long, he's the guy in charge of 2,500 employees as they roll out the red carpet for more than 20,000 visitors everyday, not to mention 35 rides, 11 roller coasters, 12 themed areas, 27 food shops, and tons of summer concerts and shows.

So I guess jobs don't get any better than that, right?

HEATHER

Well part of my job is actually riding rides.

VO

Hold up! Who are you?

HEATHER

My name is Heather Clark, I'm the operations full time supervisor over rides.

VO

And you get to ride the rides?

HEATHER

You have to. It's not a...it's not an option. We actually make sure that we ride the rides to make sure that the guest's ride is going to be safe and fun as well.

VO

Can anyone else back her up?

BRIANNA

Yep, riding rides can be a job.

VO

Sweet gig! Okay, let's meet some more Six Flags folks.

EMILY

I am the communications manager for Six Flags over Georgia and Six Flags Whitewater.

BRIANNA

I am the promotions and marketing assistant.

KEVIN

I am the facilities and construction manager at Six Flags Over Georgia.

CHARLIE

I'm the Parks Service, full time supervisor.

MOLLY

I'm the public relations coordinator here at Six Flags Over Georgia.

JAMAAL

I'm the Human Resource full time supervisor here.

MITCH

Hi, I am the production and special events supervisor here at Six Flags over Georgia.

VO

Even though these guys are full-timers, for most of them, their Six Flags careers as summer jobs. So they know what they're talking about.

MITCH

Oh, it's extremely cool, I never imagined in a million years that I would be working with some of the artists I've been able to work with.

EMILY

Six Flags makes your job so much fun it doesn't feel like you're working every day.

JAMAAL

One of the benefits is actually coming to the park free of charge. You can ride all the rides that you can, and just, come and have a fun time.

VO

And not just when the park is open to the general public.

CHARLIE

We do have exclusive ride times for employees. We call them section parties, where it's just the employees get to come out and ride the rides, so you know whatever section they have open.

KEVIN

You also can go to the other parks within the six flags family. So if you're taking trips across the country you can always stop at one of the other parks and enjoy the day there.

VO

How about a typical workday here? Fill me in, Heather.

HEATHER

I go out into the park, make sure that the front gate is good with staffing and then I make sure that the rides are good to go, we're engaging the guests, we're making sure we're giving them the best experience possible.

VO

I'll bet you guys are serious roller coaster experts, right?

KEVIN

That is correct...

HEATHER

Whoo!

EMILY

Whoo!

MOLLY & BRIANNA

Whoo!

JAMAAL

Whoo!

KEVIN

Whoo! That's my move, right there. The white knuckles.

DALE

Whoo!

MITCH

Yeah! All right!

CHARLIE

Actually you'd be surprised I don't ride rides.

VO:

C'mon Charlie. Work with me!

CHARLIE

Whooooooooooooo!

VO

And by the way, the President has a theory about what makes rollercoasters so much fun.

DALE

Some people enjoy the pure adrenaline rush and not knowing what lies around the corner of the track. Others like to be scared or like others to think there scared.

VO

Sounds like there's some science behind the excitement. So...

BRIANNA

It's time to take amusement out of amusement park.

MOLLY

It's time for a teachable moment.

VO

Let's get back to that adrenaline rush. Sometimes called fight or flight syndrome, an adrenaline rush is when your body amps up to fight...or run like crazy. It's the body's natural reaction to a serious threat - like being chased by a bear or taking a final exam. Both potentially life or death situations. When adrenaline is released by the adrenal gland into the blood system, the heart begins to pump harder, blood pressure goes up and airways in the lungs open. This causes blood to flow away from these organs and into major muscle groups.

And this biology is helped by some physics-things like the transfer of energy and angular momentum. You see, rollercoasters take potential energy, like a car sitting on top of a really steep hill, and transfer that to kinetic energy, which is energy in motion. That's a vertical transfer of energy. But when you're moving horizontally and the coaster takes an unexpected turn, that's a change in angular momentum, and that makes the ride even more fun...depending on how much you like rides of course.

But does this science really help you in your jobs at Six Flags?

KEVIN

It is something that I never thought sitting in class in high school that I would ever use in a theme park environment, what we use every day.

VO

Anyone else?

CHARLIE

We do have chemicals sometimes we have to mix chemicals to a water ratio or a chemical to another chemical ratio.

VO

So in simple terms, if you were to do high school all over again...

HEATHER

I would probably pay attention in science classes.

VO

I'm on it! So what do I do if I want to work here?

JAMAAL

Six Flags Jobs dot com.

CHARLIE

Six Flags Jobs dot com.

KEVIN

Six Flags Jobs dot com is the best place to go. All the listings are out there.

VO

And other than some science skills, what else are you looking for?

DALE

The number one criteria that we look for when we're looking for young people to come and join our team is an inherent enjoyment of making people happy.

VO

That's more like it! And people love working here because...

EMILY

It's just a huge variety of things. You can be writing press releases at one time and then you could be doing social media, you could be conducting interviews, you could be running events to launch new rides.

HEATHER

I never really thought of it to be a career. I really just got it as a summer job and from there I kind of fell in love with it. I developed a passion for being here.

BRIANNA

I would say the best thing about working at Six Flags is honestly the friends that I've made while working here.

MITCH

The coolest thing about my job is I'm in the business of making memories.

CHARLIE

Another happy ending at Six Flags.

VO

It sure is. And it's also another happy ending to our show. But we'll be back with more great Georgia jobs on the next episode of Fast Forward.

This content was developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. However, this content does not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.