Disney College Program: 4 days in!

Oh my goodness, so much has happened in the last four days, where do I even begin? My mom even asked me why I haven’t updated my blog (Bless her.). Anyway, I am back since I finally have a minute to sit down and write a bit! And I should do it today because I am taking in so much new information that I’m already having to backtrack to remember what I did on each day.

Move-In Day on Sunday, 01.15.2017
I finally met my wonderful roommates! My assigned check-in time was 2:30 pm so I arrived right around then and waited in a line with a bunch of other excited Disney College Program participants. So I waited in line and we went through a couple different checkpoints and tables where they asked for basic identification documents and had us sign things and told us about our apartment and parking spot and we took our ID photo! Yay! Step 1 of becoming an official Disney employee!

We found out what our apartment number was and there was a short housing meeting around 5:00 pm and then we spent the rest of the afternoon moving into our apartment which only took me about 16 trips to my car. Luckily, I got a parking spot right underneath our apartment (other parking lots were around the corner, across the street, down the block, etc.). It’s almost as if Disney knew I had little legs that can only travel so far. Bless the mouse.

It was already pre-decided but I am sharing a room with Diana and Katy and we literally all were too nice, for lack of a better term, to choose a bed because none of us had a preference and did not care. Six hours later (read that in the Spongebob narrator voice), we ended up using a randomizer online because we just could not decide. I ended up getting top bunk which I was kind of excited about because I’ve never had a bunk bed before and it’s very exciting! It’s like my own little princess tower looking down on my peasant roommates…HA, just kidding. I love them so much. SO MUCH. Anyway. Can you tell I’m excited? I feel like a little girl again; also appropriate, because I am living out my childhood dream by working for Disney.

The apartment is shockingly nice for not that much $$$, though I’m coming from San Francisco so everything is cheap. Rent is $149.50 a week and it’s taken out of our paychecks so I don’t have to worry about anything. The apartment has a modern kitchen with granite (?) counter tops, a good sized living room, two bedrooms and two bathrooms, as well as a few pantry closets and a little laundry closet. Also, let’s talk about how I don’t have to go to a coin laundry for the next 8 months?? Amazing. Brilliant. Iconic. Anyway, one bedroom has two single beds and the other has one bunk bed and a single bed. The apartment is fully furnished and the rent covers the cost of wifi, utilities, water and garbage (WHAAAAT!?), and a parking spot…basically….literally everything I didn’t have in San Francisco. SO happy that Disney provides such nice housing for an affordable amount. The apartment itself has security 24/7, a small courtyard and a fitness center. Also my room has a walk-in closet and I think I died a little bit when I saw that. More pictures to come.

We ended the night by having dinner at the Anaheim Packing District which is a hipster’s paradise (I feel like I’m going to say this a lot just eating around Los Angeles) and I got pizza and two of my roommates got pho, which I physically cannot bring myself to eat because my mom’s pho has ruined all other pho for me. Anyway…

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Roommates! 

CP Orientation & Resident Welcome Party on Monday, 01.16.2017
Monday started off bright and early because we had our College Program Orientation at 8:30 am at Team Disney Anaheim. Two things. Bless Starbucks coffee early in the morning and bless Team Disney Anaheim being a roughly 8 minute drive away from our apartment. The orientation was about 2 hours and we met a wonderful man named Paul who will be our teacher at some point soon. I am signed up for the Leadership Speaker series class, which I will write more about when I actually attend the class. The Disney College Program at the Disneyland Resort requires each participant to take one of the classes they offer…it’s part of their Living, Learning & Earning mission. Anyway! At this orientation, we learned a little bit about the Disney Look (very important because I’ve had to learn how to tone down my makeup…and no more winged eyeliner, *CRY*) and about the program in general. We also met a couple of people who were part of the Housing team such as the housing manager, events coordinator, community coordinator, and professional intern.

Ran some errands throughout the day and unpacked a little bit more. Around 5 pm, there was a Resident Welcome Party, which had a photobooth and photo spots (my favorite!), free pizza (also my favorite!), a DJ, etc. It was reminiscent of a freshman orientation dance but better because Disney.

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Diana and I, featuring housing manager Philliam aka Phil
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All of my housemates! From left to right: Diana, Allison, Mariel, yours truly and Katy

Traditions on Tuesday, 01.17.2017
Traditions Day! I’ve heard so much about this class from past DCP participants and I finally got to attend. Disney split us into two groups so some people got to go on Tuesday and some people get to go on Friday, depending on their role. Traditions was a full work day, consisting of learning about all of the fun things about Disney, as well as some of our core values, etc. It was a really good experience, thanks to great Traditions facilitators (thank you Greg & Dani, if you ever see this!). I also received my ID card! Yay! The picture isn’t terrible…yay again!

Property Orientation on Wednesday, 01.18.2017
Today! Finally. Today’s check-in wasn’t until 10:30 am so I got to sleep in until 8:00 am versus 6:00 am…blessed. Katy and I headed over around 10:10 am and got there on time. We had our Property Orientation with two facilitators today – Michelle and Christian. Both were really great and had a wealth of knowledge about the Disneyland resort and its history. There were about 20 of us in the classroom today, split between Hotel Operations and Merchandise at the Downtown Disney shopping district. We took a tour of the downtown district and the three super different hotels and I learned so much more about Disney that made me appreciate the company that much more.

Oh, fun fact, I learned that out of the 400 participants that got accepted to the Disneyland College Program (out of the 40,000+ that applied, if I am not mistaken), only 5 were selected to work the Front Desk role. I was one of 5, so that’s kind of neat. Catch me at the Disneyland Resort Hotel!! AHHHH!

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Tomorrow is a Welcome to Operations session sometime in the morning again and then I have like six days off so we’ll see what happens over the week. I can’t wait to share more about my job once I start training and learn more about my role and create my own Disney magic! It feels so good to be joining the Disney family. Feels like home. 🙂

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