People often ask me what I like most about my job. There are so many things I could say and spend hours talking about, but one thing that holds a special place in my heart is arrival day.
That’s when all of our newest interns arrive at Disneyland® Resort and begin their life-changing adventure. I’ll never forget the unbelievable feeling of beginning my program 16 years ago and seeing the joy and excitement in others is something I cherish every season. It truly is the beginning of something special.
We just welcomed nearly 400 new cast members to Disneyland Resort, and witnessing their enthusiasm and energy is nothing short of inspiring. For many of them, this is just the beginning of their lifelong dream of working for The Walt Disney Company, and it’s an honor to help make that dream come true.
Our participants come from all over the world and most of them have never met anyone else on their program prior to their arrival. They don’t know it right away, but throughout their journey, they’re going to discover a completely different version of themselves, a person filled with confidence, maturity and courage.
And, as an added surprise, they walked into their apartments and discovered brand new furniture and – wait for it – no bunkbeds! Carnegie Plaza has never looked better and we’re so excited to kick-off a new decade of our Disney College Program in California.
These next eight months will not only include working in our theme parks and resorts, but it’ll also include weekly events and offerings, backstage tours of popular attractions, networking sessions and career development opportunities unlike any other.
During the program, everyone will also be encouraged to step out of their comfort zone to challenge themselves, which can be a little scary. Think about a time when you started a new job, went to college or moved to a different city. You were probably a little nervous, right? That’s perfectly fine and expected! Trust me, we know the first week or two can be filled with some nerves and anxiety. Here’s a secret: we’re a little nervous, too! After all, we’re all a Disney family now and we want everyone to have the most rewarding experience ever.
Throughout arrival week, I heard so many fun and inspiring stories, such as one participant who just finished a program in Florida and spent the week driving across the country from Orlando to Anaheim with her best friend. To them, this isn’t just another internship; it’s an opportunity to fulfill their ultimate dream of having a professional career at Disney. They made several stops along the way, adopted a fish, and shared their journey on social media. For me, it was a good reminder of how much people love our internship program and the sacrifices they make to join us in Southern California.
I met many others whom have already graduated from college but their ultimate goal is to work in animation for Disney. Their stories were inspiring and their artwork they shared with me is incredible. Others told me how nervous they were and it was their first time being away from their family. A few days later, I saw them at Disneyland Park, hanging out with their roommates and having the time of their lives.
If your dream is to one day participate in the Disney College Program at Disneyland Resort, you’re in luck! Our recruiting season for the fall 2020 Disney College Program and Disney Professional Internships is now underway. We’re looking for college students to participate in the program, beginning in May or August 2020.
You never know – I could be greeting YOU in a few months and witnessing YOU fulfill your lifelong dream!