First and foremost, it should be known that I've always loved Disney. I was that 90's kid with Lion King pajamas, Pocohantas chapstick, and Little Mermaid underwear. I've always been drawn to the wholesome romances and perpetual good vs evil, where good always wins. I had the classics on repeat as a child and now, as an adult, I still find them comforting to watch. Until this year, I thought Disney would always just be an interest of mine. Now, I have my mind set on making Disney more than just an interest... I want to make it my career.
I had heard about the Disney College Program back when I was in undergrad and a friend of mine went to Florida. I looked into it back then, but my specific program never allowed the time off. When I was in Qatar, one of my best friends got into DCP and also went to Florida. Her pictures from her amazing experience drove me absolutely crazy! I was so sad that I never got to do that while I was in school. It seemed like the perfect opportunity, especially for someone like me.
While at Harvard, I realized that my passion for children's media was actually more general than just what's deemed "educational". Really, it's children's television and film that I'm drawn to, and when the content happens to be educational that's simply a plus given my background as a teacher. Once I broadened the potential of working for children's TV/film companies, Disney immediately became the frontrunner. During my first semester I even titled one of my personal projects, "My Road to Disney" and detailed all of my efforts to make myself a viable candidate to work for the Walt Disney Company after graduation. I was further inspired to go down this road when I went to the Pixar Masterclass during my second semester. The culture and mission of Disney and Pixar are both right up my alley!
As part of the project I mentioned, I was thrilled to find out that master's students are still eligible to apply for the Disney College Program! The only stipulation is that you have to be a current student when you submit your application. Lucky for me, the application for the Fall 2015 cohort opened in February 2015, when I was still at Harvard. I'm pretty sure I was just as nervous for the Disney phone interview as I was when I submitted my application to Harvard! I felt like I wanted this just as much, and just like before, I went to sleep every night wishing and praying they would let me in.
In March, as I was on the T in Boston commuting to campus to meet with my advisor, I received the email from Disney that I had been waiting for...
I've accepted the position of PhotoPass Photographer at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California! When guests come to the park, I'll be one of lovely cast members taking their pictures with characters and in front of the many landmarks. Among the available positions, I'm fortunate to have one of the ones most closely related to technology, which is still my area of focus. Furthermore, I'm extremely lucky to have been accepted to Disneyland in California because I will now have the ability to network and explore future job opportunities at the production branches of the Walt Disney Company. I have a feeling this is about to be my greatest adventure yet...
Stay tuned to this page as I update with the happenings for the latest in Once Upon an Adventure! :)