Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Process: Part I

Below is the process for getting into the Disney College Program at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Step 1: Make Sure You Qualify
At the time of this writing, the requirements you must meet before applying to the Walt Disney World College Program (WDWCP) are as follows:
  1. You must be at least 18 years old by the time you arrive in Disney for the start of your program. You can apply at 17, just make sure that you turn 18 before you get to Florida. 
  2. You must have graduated high school and be currently enrolled in college at the time of your application. You must have completed at least one course in college by the time you arrive at Disney for the start of your program. This means you can apply as a first semester freshman or as a graduating senior during your last semester, as well as any semester in between. Duel-credit college courses taken while in high school do not count.
  3. You must be able to legally work in the United States. 
  4. You must meet your school's requirement for participation. This is usually being in 'good standing' with your school. If you receive credit for participating in the Disney College Program, you'll need to make sure you are in compliance with your school. For example if you have to take a certain kind of class or number of classes, make sure you do so. 
Step 2: Apply
Attend a presentation (either on a school campus near you or online via the E-Presentation here. I would suggest doing the E-Presentation because it will allow you to apply sooner. The sooner you apply the higher your chances are of being accepted. The information is the same in both presentations, the difference is at the school presentations there will be Disney reps there to answer questions. You can do both if you like). Write down your confirmation code because you'll need it to start the Web Based Interview. Know what season you would like to apply for before you fill out the paperwork.

The seasons are as follows:
Spring: January-May (Approximately the spring school semester)
Spring Advantage: January-August (spring school semester + summer)
Fall: August - Early January (approximately the fall school semester)
Fall Advantage: Late May - Early January (fall school semester + summer)

There are also programs designed specifically for those on a trimester or quarterly based school system.

The application is your basic legal information including name, social security number, address, college/university, and a small (300 character) place for any extra information (languages, skills, etc).

An additional step in the application process is to fill out a "Role Checklist". This is a list of the job opportunities you may have should you get accepted. Only answer yes to those roles you truly feel comfortable doing for months. In your phone interview, you will state the order in which you would like to be considered for the roles you selected.

Step 3: The Web Based Interview
After you've completed your application, you move on to the web based interview. This is a Gallup survey meant to assess your personality and work habits. It takes about 30 minutes to complete and has mostly questions like "I handle stressful situations well" and you answer either strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, or strongly disagree. General tips for this are to answer consistently and to not answer neutrally too often.The "interview" isn't too hard, its just stressful. Just try to remain calm and think about how you would behave if you worked at Disney World (besides OMG OMG OMG!).

After you've completed the web based interview, if you've passed, you can log back in to your application and there will be a number for you to call to set up a phone based interview. If you are not presented with the phone number, you did not pass the web based interview and you'll have to reapply next semester.

Next: The second half of the process

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