College students, you may be thinking employment at Walt Disney World… Yeah, right! However, before jumping the gun prematurely while downplaying this ideal introduction into the work force, I’d seriously continue reading this article before opting not to have anything to do with this potentially beneficial opportunity. I was one of the fortunate college students that took the opportunity to inquire and choose to partake in the Disney College Program!
The lasting friendships, Disney experience and educational programs as well as the fun that I had while learning about the Disney Company and its exemplary history have had a profound impact on my life. Moreover, the declaration of working for the Disney Company looks great on a resume as guest service, fortune 500 company and the Disney name are credible credentials that can really expand and upgrade your resume.
Their are two ways of applying for the Disney College Program: Recruitment through the various designated colleges throughout the United States, though college students from all over the world can also participate in the college program, or by completing an on line application, on the Disney College Program website.
Going through the local school presentation requires the student to first of all find the school that is a participant in the program, and their are several schools that are affiliated with the program. Once you find the school closest to you, you will find a date that a recruit from the Disney Company will be at that selected location with the location as well. Students attending the presentation will then be asked to sign up for an interview. From the time that the interview has been completed, student can expect to have a response within 2-4 weeks, whether or not they are accepted or not.
The on line E-application process requires the student to fill out the application on line and print it. This type of application process is ideal for those students that live to far from the live on-campus presentation, have a scheduling conflict, or wish to get the application process started immediately. The presentation via phone will last roughly 40 minutes and a telephone interview will also be given.
Application requirements are few but need be adhered to. Students that are still in High School but have a dual enrollment with a college are not eligible. Students that have taken a semester off are also not eligible. The Disney College Program cannot be substituted for and implemented as the first semester of school. Seniors can attend as long as they have applied before graduation. Graduates can also attend the College Program.
As a “cast member” and a integral part of the magic known as the world that Walt Disney created, you will have a unique opportunity to learn many key elements that will help you in life’s endeavors. Hospitality, guest services, time management, leadership, communications, team player, self confidence and discipline are just a few pertinent concepts you will be able to use along your future career path. These concepts will be learned on the job and in a classroom setting. The classroom setting is ideal for learning about the many aspects of the Walt Disney Company. Marketing, finance, hospitality, The “Disney look”, merchandising and the history of the Walt Disney Company will be addressed.
Housing amenities are offered to college students by the Disney Company. One to four bedroom apartments are available at various weekly rates depending on the amenities, number of bedrooms, location and floor plans. The price of the housing is deducted from your weekly paycheck! The awesome and unique benefit of residing on a Disney complex is the fact that you will have the opportunity to meet many new faces. Moreover, you will be able to meet fellow college students from across the country as well as from around the world.
Transportation to and from the park is not necessary as bus shuttle service is available from your complex to the park that you will be working at. You have the choice of working at one of the four parks, which includes the Magic Kingdom, EPCOT Center (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow), Disney Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Your participation in the college program may be on the attraction side, custodial, food and beverage or store setting. What ever part of the Disney entertainment area you will be working at, I am sure it will provide you with a sense of awe, excitement and fun while becoming an integral part of the Disney Company. As a cast member, you will have a profound distinct impact on the experience and excitement observed by the millions of tourists that enter through the gates each daily. You will be representing the Disney Company, its image, legacy, uniqueness and become a team player that displays a synergistic relationship with thousands of other cast members employed by the Disney Company.
Throughout your participation in the college program, you will be able to get involved in various functions put on by the Disney faculty. Parties, get togethers, road trips, pool parties, bingo tournaments, karaoke at the Cool Beans Cafe at the Vista Way Pavilion, unbirthday party, Formal dance and party with the apex of the college program being graduation! Yes, graduation… upon completion of the program the college students will graduate from the Disney College Program, with a graduation ceremony at Mickey’s Retreat complete with many fun activities topped off with your Mickey Ears and tassel.
Some of the benefits associated with being a cast member on the college program working at Disney World include merchandise discounts, free admission to all of the parks, free parking, opportunity to eat at the various restaurants available only to cast members. These perks coinciding with the experience, thrills, excitement and knowledge that will last a life time will create fond memories and friendships. The pay is not very good, but the overall experience and knowledge gained more than makes up for the pay issue.
So, for those college students looking for some spice and adventure and learning while you go, the Disney College Program makes perfect sense! Pixie dust is not required either…
I had the time of my life as part of the college program and would recommend it to anyone. Look into it, as the worse that could happen is you find out that it isn’t right for you, but it was one of the best jobs I have ever had.