I grew up in a very Disney-obsessed family because my sisters and I love the movies, characters, and everything Disney related. When I realized that there was a way I could possibly work at Walt Disney World in Florida I almost did not believe it. As a writer who loves fairytales, stories, and magic, Disney is one of my passions. I love the magic you feel fill up your lungs when you step foot in one of the parks. I love the feeling you get on rides like Mount Everest, Rockin' Roller Coaster, and Space Mountain that make you sick to your stomach in the best way possible. I love the fairytale you walk into when you go into Cinderella's Castle for breakfast or the Be Your Guest restaurant for dinner. Only people who grew up loving Disney as much as I did will understand how much it really effects my life. When I even think about some of my favorite Disney movies and memories I get a huge smile on my face. When I go to Disney World I immediately feel like I have come home, hence the "Welcome Home" they say to my family and I when we pull up to the Wilderness Lodge Resort. That is the feeling the entire Disney corporation gives me through their movies, television shows, characters, parks, and hotels. I feel like I come home to Disney although I live over a thousand miles away.
When I was applying for the Disney College Program over the summer I got my hopes up but I still understood that there was a great possibility that I would not get in. Of course, with a big corporation like Disney I was sure there would be thousands and thousands of people applying and they would all love Disney just as much as I do, but I still felt positive. At first, there was an online application you fill out with your past work experiences and other general information about yourself. I filled this out, glad that I could put even more work experience now that I had a summer job, and I went over it for hours and hours to make sure I put all of the necessary information and made sure it truly summed up my life in the categories it was asking for. A few days after I submitted that, I got moved on to the next stage which is the Web-Based Interview (WBI). In this section, they ask you multiple questions about your personality and ethics. They rephrase questions to make sure you stay true to your answers and are not just saying what they want to hear. They get to know more about you through this process and see if you could be the right fit to work for Disney. Immediately after I was finished with the WBI, I got an email saying that I had made it to the third, and final, section of the application process which is the Phone Interview (PI). I was so excited to get to this section but I was sick to my stomach with nerves. I went to work trying to figure out exactly what types of questions I would be asked and I tried to write down all of the information I would need to answer the questions. I got some questions ready to ask the interviewer at the end of the phone interview and I made sure I had three roles I really wanted so when the interviewer asked I could explain why I thought I would be a good candidate for all three roles and to work in Disney in general. I finally had my phone interview and it went even better than I had hoped. I answered all of the questions to the best of my ability and even when my interviewer asked about jobs like custodial or lifeguarding I said I would love to do them even though they were not my tops choices because honestly I would have been fine doing anything as long as I got to spend my time in the parks and just be in Disney.
A few weeks after my PI I got an email. I had just gotten back to my dorm from work and I was really tired. I just checked my email really quickly, not even thinking to look for an email from Disney and this first thing I saw was, "Congratulations!" I nearly had a heart attack. I opened the email and read that I had gotten into the Disney College Program for Spring Advantage 2018 and I would be working in the Merchandise role which was one of my top three roles! I was so excited I immediately Face Timed my family! When I told them I started crying instantly and I could not even believe that I would be getting this amazing, once in a lifetime opportunity. More than a month later I still cannot believe its real. I don't think it will sink in until I'm there but I am so excited! I have found roommates and we have been talking about what we are excited to do once we get there and I am having such a fun time immersing myself in the Disney College Program culture. I watch all of the vloggers who have done the DCP in the past and it looks like the time of their lives.
I cannot wait to make magic happen for all of the guests I will come in contact with and I cannot wait to witness that magic that is Disney when I go to the parks everyday, whether for work or play. I just know that this next year is going to be my best yet because I am going to get an amazing opportunity to make so many memories with great co-workers, roommates, and guests that will change my life forever. Being surrounded by Disney-lovers will be the best way to spend my days. We will walk down Main Street singing along to the fireworks shows and wave to all of the characters while watching the parade. I cannot wait to become a Wilderness Explorer and roam around Animal Kingdom with Doug, fly over the world in Soarin' and travel the world in the same park (EPCOT), meet all of the princesses and princes in Magic Kingdom and then go have breakfast with them, and ride the thrilling rides in Hollywood Studios and then grab a Mickey ice cream bar.
Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would ever really work for Disney but I can proudly say that I really will be. Starting on January 29th I will officially be a cast member at Disney World. I will be there until August 2nd, so I hope that within that seven month period I will learn so much about the Disney community, develop even more skills in my career and be inspired everyday by the magic I see around me and make for the guests everyday. I am so excited to be going on this journey and I want you all to come along! You can follow along with my articles as I go through the program and I will update everyone on how it has been going. This is going to be a great new experience and I can't wait to start!