From time to time, we talk with a parent who knows little to nothing about the Disney College Program – and their student has just been accepted!  Many times, we help to calm the parent’s jittery nerves about their child being so far from home.  Occasionally, we’re asked how this program can truly help their student in their future career, particularly if they’re in a major that seems disconnected from the theme park idea of Disney.  Rarely, we encounter a parent who flat out refuses to believe that working in Custodial or Attractions is really going to factor into their student’s resume development.

Mom or Dad, think again!

There have been Business and Accounting majors who spent their programs in Attractions, loading Guests onto Spaceship Earth, who confirm that having Disney on their resume has opened doors for them in the corporate world, for many years after they completed their programs.

Engineering majors who may have prepped food in Quick Service Food and Beverage positions have moved into Professional Internships and even into careers as Disney Imagineers.

Scholars with impressive 4.0 grade averages working as Lifeguards or in Custodial positions have even reported that their customer skills have been honed and that their world view has been changed because of being in the Disney College Program.

It’s not all glitz and glamour, it’s hard work, and it’s often in an area that you may think has no benefit whatsoever to your incredibly talented computer graphics or X major.  And you’d be wrong.  The Disney College Program is also a door to making connections in their field, learning about things they might do with their degree, and meeting those who may be able to guide them as to how to move up within the company.  And for those who don’t intend to stay with the company, it’s a resume line item that your child completed a sought-after internship, in which only approximately 8% of applicants are accepted, and in a Fortune 100 company with, arguably, the best training model in the world.

Parents, don’t discount something that you may not know enough about.  And don’t crush your child’s dream or their enthusiasm.  We’ve spoken to recruiters who wax poetic about how, when they see the Disney College Program on an applicant’s resume, they most definitely get the interview, and usually get the job.

So, whatever lofty career your student may be aiming toward, remember one other little fact — everyone seems to want to talk about what’s it was like to work at Disney!  The experience truly opens doors.

by Laura Schwartz

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