Q&A with Recruiter Christy | Discover the Disney College Program

What’s up everybody? My name is TJ, I’m a
marketing intern here at Disney and I also happen to be a Disney College
Program alum. Shoutout to Disneyland fall 2017! Alright, a few days ago we asked you guys to submit your questions via
Instagram about the application and interview process, and I’m here with my
friend recruiter Christy, who’s going to answer all those questions for you. So
Christy are you ready? I am ready let’s do this! Alrighty, let’s dive in. So
starting with question one, what are the requirements for applying? The requirements for applying for the program is that we encourage you to be enrolled in a college or university taking at least one class at the
timeframe of when you apply. And the great news now is that you can also
apply for the program one year post-graduation. That’s so awesome. I know that
wasn’t a thing when I applied. Yes, to capture those seniors that are
graduating and still may not know exactly what they want to do yet. And
also if you are attending grad school, you can also apply for the Disney College Program. Oh that’s so great to include our friends in grad school. Question two, what makes a candidate stand out in their application and
throughout the entire interview process? There’s a lot of different criteria that
we use when we were looking at a qualified candidate. A lot of that has to
do with work experience, independent living experience and an overall life
experience. What year are you in school? What is your major? How into your major
you are. What classes have you taken? What organizations do you belong to? We really are looking for that life experience, and how you are able to take that life
experience, that work experience, the living experience and combine it into
one overall criteria. The whole package, right? The whole package! That’s awesome. So on the application you have the opportunity to express interest in the roles that you would like to be considered for. Now this
person asked, “Would you recommend expressing interest in just a few roles
that you love, or many roles that you have moderate interest in to maybe keep
like the options open?” My best advice for this is to look at all the roles as something that you would be wanting to do while participating on the program. So,
we don’t look at the quantity of how many roles you check off that you
express high interest or moderate interest or low interest. We just want
to know if you’re interested in that specific role. So I would say if it means
participating in the program and doing that role, then absolutely check yes. But
if you know that you have no interest in that role, or if you are a lifeguard and
you know that you don’t know how to swim, it’s okay to check no interest for a
lifeguard. So we say that we want you to check the roles that you feel that you
have the most experience in and that you feel that you would be a good fit in on
the program. Right. You’ve got to make sure you’re happy doing your work every day. Exactly, exactly. Awesome. Good answer. Next question: how should I prepare for the phone interview? I know people have some different
strategies there so what do you recommend? I like to say do your homework.
Know the company and know the internship that you are applying for,
whether that is for the college program, professional internship, a full-time
part-time position. Do your homework. You need to know the company that you want
to work for. I also like to say let us see your smile through the phone.
Because we are a company about guest service. We’re about creating magic. We
want to know about the times that you went out there and made a bad situation
into a better situation. We want to know about your life experiences and how you
can fit in on our team and how you can contribute to creating that magic. So I
like to say I hire the magic, but you are the ones that are actually creating the
magic. That’s awesome. So we know the application season is about to open. When do you recommend applying during that season: toward the first day
or the last day? I think a lot of times people think that they have to apply for the program the first day that it opens, and then they get a little frustrated
because they have to wait a few weeks before they actually interview. And the
reason why we do that is because we have so many people that apply that first day
that if we put everyone through at one time, then they’re going to have to wait
maybe a week, two weeks, three weeks, four weeks to actually interview. So to me, we
look at a student the same way that applies the first day or the last day.
The only benefit in applying early is that you are able to be considered
for the program for a longer amount of time. We may have more roles available at
the beginning of the season than we do at the end of the season. So there are
benefits to applying a little bit earlier in the season, but we do not
penalize you for applying the last day. You’ll be looked at exactly the same as
a candidate who applied the first day of the program. Okay, so can you apply for
both the Walt Disney World Resort and the Disneyland Resort at the same time? Yes. On our application, you can indicate on the application if you are interested in both Walt Disney World and Disneyland.
When you get to the interview portion of the process, we will ask you during the
interview if you have a preference for the east coast or the west coast. And at
that time we will go over a little bit of the differences between the two
coasts, and we will then notate on the notes that we take which coasts you
prefer over the other one. So while, yes, you can be considered for both coasts, at
the time of an offer it will only be for one coast. Okay great. I know that the Disneyland college program is a lot smaller than this college program, so
I think a lot of people might apply to both just hoping that they get into
something, rather than the limited amount of spots that are over
there in Disneyland. And I think that’s the important piece that- you know, it’s important that we know what your interests are when filling out the
application. It’s the same thing with our seasons as well, and the roles that you
select. We want to know what you’re interested in, but during the actual
interview itself is when we are going to really find out what is going to make
you happy while on the program. What are you interested in and what drives you? Okay, great. Thank you. So what is the difference between spring and spring advantage, and can you apply for both of these programs at the same time? Again, that’s another thing that you’re going to be able to indicate on your application. You’ll be able to select spring, spring advantage. But with those
specific seasons, you’ll notate it on your application that you have interest
in it, and then in the interview again is when we’ll solidify what your top
preference is for that. So, the spring program is our shorter program.
It’s our five month internship, and right now it’s scheduled to go from January
until about the May time frame. So, it just incorporates the spring season. Then we
have spring advantage, which is actually my favorite because you’re here
longer. It’s our seven month internship. It starts in January, the same time that
the spring program does, but it goes throughout this summer. So, I’d like to
say it incorporates the spring and the summer season combined together. So, you don’t have to go home and find a summer job while you’re waiting for the school
season to begin. The spring advantage program kind of incorporates that into
one program. I also like the spring advantage program because of the fact
that you’re here longer. It gives you more opportunity to network, hang out
with your roommates, really learn about your role. You could possibly learn
different skills within the role that you’re doing because you’re here just a
longer amount of time. The spring program is great for people that want to do the
internship and then have plans over the summer. Maybe they’re going back to
school, and they want to take summer classes so they don’t fall far behind. so
there’s two different options that we have available for our students, but
either one is a better experience. But my preference is the spring advantage
because you get to be here a little bit longer and really enjoy the magic. Gotcha. Now I know that along with the length of the program, on the Disneyland
side at least, that housing comes into play with advantage and a non-advantage
program. So, can you dive into that a little bit as well? Well, with the
Disneyland program, if you are a- There’s the resident program and then there is the local program. The local program is meant for those candidates that live in the Anaheim area that want to participate in the program. And then our
resident program is for our candidates who are interested in living there. So
they can maybe attend Penn State University and head over over to
Disneyland. They want to do their internship over there. So we do have
housing. It is a little bit more limited than the housing that we have available
here at Walt Disney World, but again that’s a capacity issue. It’s a size
issue. Our program, we have four theme parks, we have water parks, and and at
Disneyland they’re a little bit more of a smaller park with two theme parks
and a Downtown Disney area. So they have those other options that are available
there. Same program, little bit of differences, but still
a great experience whichever one you choose. Right, right. So, during the phone
interview, is it frowned upon or is it okay to request a work location? Oh, I would love to hear where you would love to work. If you have a favorite park or a
favorite resort, or somewhere that you have just wonderful memories with your
family, and you’re like, “Gosh I would love to work there,” express it in your
interview. Just say, “Hey, if I get the opportunity to join the Disney College
Program, regardless of what role, my favorite resort is the Grand Floridian,”
or, “My favorite park is Animal Kingdom because I’m an animal science major and
I just would love to be in that type of environment.” So, it is okay to go ahead
and ask if you can be placed in that location if you are made an offer for
the program, but we can never make a guarantee because there’s so many
different things that go into effect- your arrival date and and do they have
open positions at that time. So there are different things that go into the
decision. You can always ask but we’ll never guarantee. Okay. Great, great. I wish
I would have known that. I was kind of nervous in my phone interviews, so I was
just like, “I’m happy anywhere,” which is true, but- Well we like to create the magic. That’s the fun part like, like if I know that you really love working at Magic Kingdom and want to work on Main
Street, of course I want to make you happy and have you work in a
location that you have always dreamed about working in. But I also say,
is there really a bad place to work at Disney? Nope. No, exactly! so regardless of whether you get your favorite location, or you’re put in a location that you’ve never been to before, it’s going to be a great experience. I always say you get out of the program what you put into the
program. Absolutely, absolutely. Alrighty, and for those who are applying for a second time and maybe didn’t get accepted the last time they
applied: what advice do you have for our friends there? I have a lot of advice, and I
think that advice is don’t give up. We have seen, especially being on Twitter
and social media and interacting with our students, I see all the time students
that are saying, “I’m frustrated because this is my second time or third time
applying for the program.” And the first thing I say to them is the timing wasn’t
right. There must have been a reason why the timing was not right, and when the
timing is right, everything seems to fall into place so the first thing I tell
people is don’t be discouraged. Focus on what you want to do. That’s an
opportunity for you to kind of go back and have those conversations with your
family, with your faculty members. Use that time to really figure out what you
want to do, so when you do get pushed forward to that web-based interview,
you’re prepared. When you get pushed forward to that phone interview, it gives you
that time to really prepare yourself because it is a very competitive
internship. And many, many, many, many of our students are highly qualified to be
a part of this internship. So you want to really take the time filling out your
application as well. You want to put on there the work experience, the living
experience, and then be able to support that by talking about them in the
interview and being able to say, “I worked in this location and this is how I made
a difference working in my location where I currently have my job.”
So whether you are working in a quick- service food and beverage location or a
merchandise location in your current job, I want to be able to hear about that
experience. So practice with people about your interviews and just really get
to know the program. And then you’ll be able to share that during the
interview, and that will come across. Right, right. Thank you. I know I did a
lot of talking to myself in the mirror before my interview. And I know that’s some advice that’s probably widely known by now, but, yeah, I feel like it does
make a difference. You’re aware that you’re smiling and you sound happy. And I think also a lot of people overthink the interview as well. I think they go into
it, and they go out there and they look at other resources that are
available or other people who had Disney College Program interviews and utilize
them as a resource. But you have to remember, you’re going to have your own
experience. So while you may be hearing about these resources and watching them,
it’s going to be a different experience for you, and you really can’t prepare for
that. You just have to be comfortable in who you are and be confident during the
interview and be able to articulate your point. Awesome. Alrighty so it looks
like the last question we have here is, “Does it matter what my major is or what
school I go to?” Well you could be a Penn State Nittany Lion like me, or you can- Arizona like you, and still be able to participate in the
program. Major- I was a political science major with a specialty in international
relations. I’ve worked for the company for so many years now, and again a lot of
people will sit there and say, “How can a political science major work for Disney?”
Like what does that fit in? It’s not about what your major is in school, it’s
how you are able to work with people. So, yes, you learn these skills within a
specific major, but then how are you going to apply it in everyday society?
How are you going to be able to go out there and treat guests? And, you know, in
political science, you’re used to working with the public. That’s how I was working
with Disney. I took those skills that I learned in those classes and I was
able to apply it in a corporate environment. And that’s what I say for
everyone, whether you are a hospitality major or a business major, there is
something for everyone here at Disney. Absolutely. Alright, great advice! Well
thank you so much, Christy. You are very welcome, and I look forward to everyone applying for the college program. I’m just so excited to kick off the season
and get this started and see all the wonderful candidates that we have
applying. Alright. Good luck, everyone! Thank you!

28 Replies to “Q&A with Recruiter Christy | Discover the Disney College Program”

  1. Thank you TJ and Christy! I've already applied and am hoping to move forward through the next steps of the process soon. I think many people like me who apply early and don't hear back right away will find it helpful to know the volume of first day applications may push your interview dates back. Hopeful that "the timing is right" for me this spring!

  2. I love this video!! It helped me relax a lot and feel a little less nervous about my interview tomorrow! Trust the process! 😊💕
    Much love for Christy!

  3. Are there any plans to add captions to this video? I’d like to watch it but it’s not accessible to me 😔

    Automatic captions (not the best but will do in a pinch) aren’t available either.

  4. I applied strictly for the Disneyland program and have my phone interview in the morning, but I want to express interest in WDW now so I can get a better chance of getting in :/

  5. Thanks for the video! This video really help me to relax and just be myself. Not to overthink about myself and start doubting. Most importantly to never give up! Thanks Disney!!

  6. I am constantly sad with how my program went. It was something I wanted to do for many years and even helped determine my college major. It was an awful experience.

  7. Christy was my recuiter who called me at 8:00pm for spring 19’. She was awesome 😎. 25 mins of talking telling me her favorite park is epcot and favorite ride is spash mountain

  8. I scheduled my phone interview for September 8th and i can’t remember how many times I’ve applied before this. I never gave up

  9. Thank you so much for this interview! Can't wait for my phone interview this week! Keep spreading that pixie dust Christy and TJ!

  10. Hi! This video was super helpful and I’m so thankful you posted this💖I have a phone interview scheduled for this weekend and I’m so excited however I do have a question I’m interested in working for the company long term and relocating to Orlando and finishing my degree at UCF should I mention this in the interview I heard about Disney aspire and have so much to ask. Should I mention this or will this not be more harmful in the interview?

  11. So helpful! I had my Interview September 4th and I had a blast learning and expressing my love for Disney. I’m an Alumni for Dcp 2014 and I went back to school to finish my degree. Fingers crossed to make more magic in the future!

  12. Hey yall! I wrote a blog on DCP! I based it off of my friends that have participated and off of vlogs! It's a quick read so go check it out! @t

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