Friday, June 3, 2011

New address.

I decided to move this blog over to tumblr. I reposted all the posts that were here and will continue to update over there. Please follow. :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

One Step Closer.

I had my last final Friday which means it's summer and I am officially a senior in college. That idea is absolutely terrifying to me. I cannot believe that after 17 years, I only have one more year of school before I'm going to be thrown into the real world and expected to make a life for myself. If I'm being honest, I'm quite happy to be postponing that moment for a few months while I run away to Disney World. In the grand scheme of things, what difference is it going to make if I graduate in May or December? I might as well take advantage of this sort of opportunity now because I know that if I didn't, I'd look back someday and regret never applying for this program. It was quite strange walking back to my apartment after my last final knowing that I wouldn't be going back to Marquette until January. I felt quite stupid getting a bit emotional over it when I still have another year left before graduation. I can only imagine how I'll feel next December when I'm preparing for graduation. However, I'm going to choose not think about that right now.

Anyway, when I was planning this blog, I thought of a whole bunch of entries that I wanted to write that would include tips/helpful information for any DCP hopefuls reading this, and of course, I seem to have forgotten all of them. Although, now that it's summer, maybe I'll have more time to devote to this. And perhaps, just maybe, the entries will get more interesting as check in gets closer. Which, as a matter of fact, yesterday marked 100 days until August 22nd. It's still a long way off, but I feel like these next few months are going to go by pretty quickly. In a few weeks, I'll be starting my internship at ESPN Milwaukee which I am really looking forward too. I'd love to work for ESPN someday so this might be a great place to start. I don't have any other big plans for the summer so unless I manage to find another part time job, I'll probably have plenty of time to prepare for August. 

So this was another pointless entry. Sorry. I promise, at some point, these entries will get more interesting/exciting. At least I hope so. 

Friday, April 29, 2011

A whole lot of nothing.

It's been a crazy couple of weeks. The semester is ending soon (Only one more week of classes!) which means last minute meetings for group projects and the beginning of preparation for finals. Easter was also last Sunday so I had Thursday-Monday off, thanks to Marquette being an awesome Jesuit university. :) I ended up spending a couple of days in Chicago with my Marquette friend, Sarah. We took the train down there Thursday morning and went to a Cubs game at Wrigley Field on Friday (My first time to the stadium!) where we nearly froze. We were going to go into the city Saturday but on our way to the Metra station we ended up getting stuck behind a train so we missed the one we were going to take and the next one wasn't for a couple of hours. And since I was leaving Saturday evening, we didn't have time to go. Despite that, it was still quite fun. Then I spent Easter Sunday up in Madison with my family before going back to Marquette on Monday.
Just a couple pictures from Wrigley. :)

It's so hard to believe that the semester is already almost over. It feels like just yesterday that it was January and the applications for Fall had just gone up and now the recruiting period is over and almost everyone has gotten a response. There were a ton of rejections in the facebook group this week (Plug for the facebook group. If you're a Fall/Fall Advantage CP and are not yet in the facebook group, join here and meet awesome people.) which was quite sad to see. Some incredibly awesome people who had been pending for 80+ days and who definitely deserved to get accepted did not. If any of them are reading this and are planning on reapplying in August for Spring, good luck and I know you'll get accepted. You're amazing. <3 :) It really seems like everything is happening so fast. The first Check-In date for Fall Advantage is May 18th. That's only about 3 weeks away! And to be honest, I'm a tad jealous I'm not going down then but I'm also glad I'm going to have the entire summer to get everything together before going down to Florida instead of less than a week after finishing finals. 

I also have found roommates!! I was extremely worried that I wouldn't be able to find any and I'd end up doing the roommate notification on the College Program website and that I'd end up with someone completely different from myself. I'm not a big partier and one of my biggest fears was that I'd end up with a roommate who was going to be throwing wild parties in our room, some underage CPs would come, and we'd end up getting termed. But my roommates appear to be awesome and I can't wait to meet them! It's such a relief to know who I'm going to be living with.

A little more about the roommate process.

  • You have the option of signing up for the roommate notification, where Disney can match you with one roommate before you go down so that you have an opportunity to get to know them. However, if you talk to them and realize it's not going to work out, you can opt out. 
  • If you find more than one roommate on your own before heading down, you can only be guaranteed one of them. If you know you want to live with 3 other people, your only real chance of living with them is if you get to check-in at the same time, stand together in line, and ask if you can all live together.
  • Your roommates must have the same check-in date as you. So if you're going down with a friend, make sure you both sign up for the same check-in date so that you can live together. 
I can't think of anything else to add right now, but hopefully I can update again soon. Although that might be difficult with finals the week after next. But we shall see. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dream Work Locations

Like I've said a few times already, my role for the College Program is Quick Service Food and Beverage. Since I got accepted I've been thinking about where I'd like to work. Here's my list of the top 5 locations that I'd love to work at. I'm not sure if CPs typically work at all these places but it's still fun.

Outdoor Carts- All four parks

I think this one is pretty self explanatory. I already sent an email requesting outdoor foods at the Magic Kingdom as my work location but as is expected, no request is guaranteed. Working at one of these outdoor carts would be more enjoyable for me because you're actually out in the park and not stuck inside a restaurant all day. I also feel like you'd have more guest interaction at the carts. I've seen plenty of Cast Members standing in front of their carts when they're not helping anyone, just talking to guests as they pass by. Plus, like I've said before, working Outdoor Foods would provide a different experience than the one I already had at Culvers.

Beaches and Cream- Disney's Beach Club Resort

Honestly, this was never a place I really considered as somewhere that I'd like to work. But then when my parents and I were in Disney World, we were staying at the Beach Club and stopped here on our last day after being at the Magic Kingdom. The Cast Member who took our order was a college student so then I started thinking about how cool it would be to get placed here. It's a fun, casual restaurant that serves burgers, sandwiches, and of course, ice cream! The signature item on Beaches and Cream's menu is the famous Kitchen Sink. I'm pretty sure that even if I don't get placed here(which I'm sure I probably won't), I'm going to try to see if I can pick up a shift here while on the program. 

Casey's Corner/Ice Cream Parlor- Main Street USA, Magic Kingdom

Casey's Corner of my favorite restaurants at Disney World and we always make sure to grab dinner or lunch here at least once a trip. And we usually get something from the Ice Cream Parlor while we're waiting for SpectroMagic or Wishes in the evening. Casey's Corner serve hot dogs, fries, beverages, etc, while the Ice Cream Parlor serves, of course, ice cream. I think one of these two locations would be such a fun place to work. Mostly because they're located right on Main Street so even though you're inside, you're still in the middle of the park. Plus, you'd get to hear/see the parade and fireworks every night. How awesome would that be?

Pizza Planet- Backlot, Hollywood Studios
What Toy Story fan wouldn't want to work at this restaurant inspired by the animated film? Of course, I'm still a tad bitter that this Pizza Planet isn't exactly like the one in the movie. However, I'd still love to work here since it's one of my favorite places to eat at the Studios, and I love all the little touches from the films. 

ABC Commissary- Backlot, Hollywood Studios
The ABC Commissary is a Quick Service Restaurant but a bit different from the others on this list. Instead of just serving American cuisine, it features international items. Inside, movie trailers play on television screens and the walls are decorated with film posters from the past and present. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Disney Bucket List

Many people have lists of things they want to do or places they want to see at some point in their life. Visiting all 30 Major League Ballparks, traveling to Europe, and being in Times Square when the Ball drops on New Years Eve are just a few things on my Bucket List. Since I got accepted into the Disney College Program, I've started making a list of things I want to do and see at some point during the 4+ months that I'll be living in Orlando. I'll probably continue adding things to the list as the Program gets closer but here it is as of now.

  • Visit all 23 resorts. 
  • Go to all four parks in one day.
  • See more than one night show in a single night.
  • Get a drink/food from all 11 countries in World Showcase. (I'm a really picky eater so this might be difficult.)
  • Visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter more than once. I'm thinking about getting an annual pass but I don't know.
  • Watch Wishes from the walkway between the Contemporary and Bay Lake Tower. 
  • See/Ride every attraction.
  • Work in all four parks and at least one resort. I think this is possible with QSFB. I hope so. 
  • Spa day at the Grand Floridian or Saratoga Springs.
  • Get a fast pass from every attraction that has them. 
  • Meet a guest from all 50 states. 
  • Get autographs from as many characters as possible. 
  • Try a Kitchen Sink from Beaches and Cream. 
  • Go to a Tampa Bay Rays game.
  • Go to an Orlando Magic game. 
  • Spend a day at the beach. This might be hard. 
  • Spend a day at each of the Water Parks.
  • Go down Summit Plummet.
  • Eat a turkey leg.
  • Attend a Halloween and Christmas party. 
  • Be a VoluntEAR and help out with Give Kids the World. 
  • Have a Beverly shot contest. 
  • See a Cirque Du Soleil show at Downtown Disney.
  • Do a character breakfast.
  • Do a backstage tour.
  • Watch an outdoor Disney movie at one of the resorts.
  • Rent a pedal boat and go around Bay Lake and/or Seven Seas Lagoon.
  • Be the first/last one in the park. 
  • Get a picture from all the attractions that do ride photos. 
  • See the Suite in Cinderella Castle.
So, that's my list for now. Like I said, I'm sure I'll be adding more between now and the time I check in. It'll be interesting going back to this after I get home and seeing how many of these things I was able to do.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

I'm not a very good blogger

It's been a while since I wrote here. Part of that is because I've been busy with school, went out of town for spring break, and to be honest, I've also been a bit lazy. That's really one of the first things you learn about me. I'm lazy. I wish it wasn't always true but alas, it is. What can you do? And really, I'm not sure what to write about now, the CP being quite a ways off still. Anyway, I figured since I'm already procrastinating studying for my Organizational Behavior exam tomorrow , why not update the old blog? So here I am.

Like I mentioned in my last entry, I spent spring break in Disney World with my parents. It was wonderful being able to enjoy some gorgeous weather for a week. Disney World was as enjoyable as always only this time it was quite a weird sensation knowing that the next time I'll be there it won't be as a guest but as an actual Cast Member. That thought still blows my mind. I also sort of started scoping out various places that I may enjoy working. There are two main components of QSFB. You can either be placed in one of their restaurants or outside at the carts that sell water/soda, ice cream, popcorn, etc. I've decided that I'd definitely prefer to work outside at one of the carts. Since I've worked in a fast food restaurant before, even if the role is basically the same, being outside at a cart will provide a different experience than my time at Culvers. Plus, if there aren't any guests around, you can just people watch which is one of my favorite parts about being in Disney World. I actually sent an email to Disney College Recruiting requesting Outdoor Foods. I never got a response from them so I hope they got it and put it with the rest of my information. Maybe when my check in date gets closer I'll send another email or call them. At this point I don't really care which park I'm at, although I did request Magic Kingdom in the email I sent. And like I said in the last entry, during my interview I named Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom as my favorite parks so I'm still crossing my fingers I end up at one of those two but really, I don't care too much. Disney World is Disney World, I'm just happy to be there. And from what I've gathered, QSFB cast members can pick up shifts in other locations as the training is all the same. So even if my "base" is at one of the four parks, I could potentially pick up shifts at the other three which is totally awesome. I could be wrong about that but I'm pretty sure that's possible. Also, being the girl that I am, I paid a bit more attention to the costumes Cast Members at the restaurants were wearing and how I'd feel if I had to wear it. o:)

Like I mentioned in my last entry, being big baseball fans, my dad and I decided to take in a Braves Spring Training game at the Wide World of Sports Complex. That was a fun and relaxing atmosphere and I'd love to go back. My dad and I of course both wore Brewers shirts which meant we got a few comments about being in the wrong state. One of the Cast Members in the stadium even said his brother was the Dean of the College of Education at Marquette. Small world, huh?

I also celebrated my 21st birthday in Disney World. We really didn't do anything too special but it was still fun. We spent the morning/early afternoon at Epcot and then headed over to Hollywood Studios and had dinner at 50s Prime Time Cafe. Since my dad had mentioned it was my birthday when he made the reservation, when we got dessert, our "cousin" announced it to the room that I was 21 and had them sing happy birthday to me. Then we went and saw the first show of Fantasmic before heading back to the resort. This was even in our room when we got back!
The picture is a signed photo of Cinderella in front of the castle. Pretty awesome and a nice surprise!

So overall it was a really fun trip. Leaving Disney World is always pretty sad but this time it was a little bit easier knowing that I'll be going back soon for the Program! So exciting!

In other news, my dad made airline reservations for us for August. My check in date is August 22nd so we'll be flying down August 20th. My dad's going to be staying a few days after check in as well to make sure I'm settled and everything before he comes back to Milwaukee.

As of now the most important thing to me is getting everything straightened out at Marquette. I met with the Associate Dean of the College of Business the week before spring break to discuss everything and he said that all I'll have to do is give them some sort of verification that I'm going to be doing the program(like my acceptance letter) and I'll be able to enroll in a zero credit class which means that I'll still be considered a Marquette student, even though I'm not taking any classes. I'll also still get university emails and when it comes time to register for the spring 2012 semester, I'll have a registration date and time on my checkmarq account. And even though Marquette requires that you submit a form verifying that you had an advising meeting before registering or else you're locked out of your time, I'll just be able to email him and he'll be able to help me out which will be great. I really don't want to be locked out and not able to register until the last day! I'm pretty relieved that this process doesn't seem to be as complicated as I feared it'd be. However I still haven't been able to get a permission number for the zero credit class. I emailed the associate dean earlier this week asking when I could give them a copy of my letter and he directed me to someone in the Business Career Center who he said could help me. So I emailed him but he directed me to someone else in the Career Center. Ahh. I haven't emailed him yet but hopefully he will be able to help me and I can get this straightened out soon.

I also got another email from Disney this week. I love getting emails from them. It just makes it seem so...official.

Wow for having nothing to talk about, I wrote a lot. I'm sorry for the long entries. Hopefully I can start using this more and make the entries more frequent and shorter. But for now, my Organizational Behavior notes are calling me.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The application process

Since I waited to start this blog until after I already got accepted, if there's any future CP hopefuls reading this, I thought I'd take a little time to talk about the application process. Basically, there are 4 steps in the application process for the Disney College Program.
1. Attend a Campus Presentation or watch the E-Presentation
The Presentation is an opportunity to learn more about the program and is required for all applicants. If you attend a campus presentation, it's also an opportunity to talk to a recruiter and ask any questions you may have. When I first started seriously considering this program last March, I attended a presentation at MATC and when I left, I knew 100% that I wanted to do this. However, if there is no presentation at your school or a school near yours, you can watch the e-presentation which provides the same information, it's just online. If you're hoping to apply as soon as the applications go up, definitely watch the e-presentation. No matter which you decide to do though, at the end of the presentation, you will receive a confirmation code which is necessary to complete the interview process.

2. Complete the role checklist/Application
This is the step where you select which roles you will be receptive to if accepted into the program. With the exception of the role checklist, the rest is just like pretty much any other job application where you fill out your personal information, past work experience, etc.

3. Web-Based Interview
This was the step that scared me more than any other because the results of your WBI determine whether you will be eligible for a phone interview. The purpose of this interview is to evaluate your personality. It's filled with questions about if you're on time, a team player, reliable, dependable, etc. The questions are very basic and scored on a Strongly Agree/Strongly Disagree scale. However, there are many instances where the same question is asked multiple times but in different words. Such as, "I am always on time." and "I am never late." The purpose of doing this is to make sure you remain consistent with your answers. The best way to complete the interview is to answer honestly(it's easier to remain consistent that way) and answer strongly whenever possible and avoid neutral answers. Immediately after the WBI, you will see your results and whether you can continue on and schedule a phone interview.

I actually applied for the program for Spring 2011 and failed the WBI. This time, I made sure that my answers were consistent and (obviously) I passed. I also think it's important to note that if you do not pass the Web-based interview, you have to wait 6 months before you can retake it. So if you applied now and failed the WBI, you would have to wait until September to reapply even though the applications go up in August. Back when I applied for Spring, I applied the first day they went up in August and had to wait until February to reapply.

4. Phone Interview
Like I said before, the results of your WBI will determine if you can schedule a phone interview. This is really the most important part of the application process. They ask you a lot of basic questions about the Disney look, receptive to minimum wage, past work experience, etc. but then they also get into more specific questions about the roles you selected. When preparing for the phone interview, blogs from former/current cps were extremely helpful, but another resource was The Dis. There is an entire board dedicated to College Students and a lot of the topics have to do with the Disney College Program. So when you're preparing for your phone interview, I'd definitely check it out as they have common interview questions for almost every role in the program. They also have some wonderful interview tips that were extremely helpful.

Here's how my interview went. I applied February 17, 2011(6 months after I last applied) and my phone interview was February 19th at 9:30 am. During the first part of my interview, we went over my application where I was asked about the Disney look, if I was receptive to being paid between $7.25-$8.75, if I'd been convicted of a crime, if I had a valid drivers license, etc. These questions were all pretty easy to answer with a yes or a no.
The second part was where I really got to talk.
1. We talked about my past work experience and she asked which job that I've had has been my favorite.
2. The ever important why you want to work for Disney and if I'd ever consider working full time with Disney. This is definitely something you're going to want to have an answer prepared for as it is always asked. I was also asked if I had a favorite park or attraction.
3. Would you rather work in groups or independently?
4. How would you describe your work pace?
5. She of course asked what my top 3 roles were and asked if I would be interested in adding custodial or housekeeping. She made a comment about how I had a good long list of roles at the beginning of the interview. This really made me nervous even though she said there was no right or wrong answer and after I said no, she just said ok and we moved on. It's quite common for interviewers to ask if you're willing to add roles such as QSFB or housekeeping to your checklist as these are roles that require a lot of people but not many people want. If you really don't want to do them, don't be afraid to say no. I said my top 3 were Attractions, Merchandise, and Character Attendant.
6. Why do you want to be a character attendant?
7. What have you done in your past jobs where you've made a guest feel special?
8. How would I instill Disney magic from beginning to end at the entrances? Or something like that. This was a question directed towards Main Entrance Operations.
9. Do you have any cash handling experience? I mentioned working at a fast food restaurant at the beginning and after asking this she was like, "Oh at Culvers', right?"
10. She asked about my experience speaking in front of groups and how it makes me feel. I mentioned most of my experience was from presentations in class so she asked what the longest speech I've had to memorize was.
11. She also asked how I'd feel about doing a job that was repetitive. Then she asked what I'd do if I was interrupted while giving a speech or something.

That's pretty much all I was asked. Overall my interview took about 20 minutes. I actually really wasn't sure how it had went because while my interviewer was so nice, it seemed like at the end she was ready to hang up. I had a feeling that if I was going to get accepted I'd get QSFB because it was on my role checklist and I have experience in fast food. It definitely wans't my first choice but I'm not upset about it. I'm just going to make the most of it. At the end I asked if I could request a work location and since I said my favorite park was Hollywood Studios or Magic Kingdom she said that she had put that in. However I did send an email yesterday requesting outdoor foods at the Magic Kingdom as my work location.

At the end of the interview I was told that it would be 3-4 weeks before I heard anything which is pretty standard but plenty of people hear before that. I was accepted 10 days after my interview. How you are informed of your acceptance also varies. Most of the time, they send out acceptance emails but also some people just receive the purple folder in the mail.

I guess that's pretty much all about the interview process. This is such a long entry but I hope anyone who's reading this as a CP hopeful found it helpful. That is if anyone made it through the entire thing.

I'm off to Disney World Saturday for my spring break. I'm so excited and can't wait to enjoy some warm weather for a change. I'm also going to a Braves game at the Wide World of Sports which will be a lot of fun. I've never been to the Wide World of Sports before and as someone who loves baseball, I can't wait to see a live game again, even if it's not my team(Go Brewers!)

Again, sorry for the novel.

On an unrelated note, Go Marquette!! Beat Louisville!