What it is Like Working for Disney
I have been coming to the Walt Disney Resort since I was extremely little (I can guesstimate around 3 years old). I came with my family when I was a baby, I came with my best friends when I was in elementary and middle school, I spent most weekends in high school at Disney with my boyfriend (same thing in college, really). I love and always have loved: Disney. And now I work for Disney.
What it is Like Working for Disney
Again, I reiterate, I love Disney. Working for Disney was something I dreamed about as a kid. I mean who doesn’t love having something like Disney World to play in. It’s practically in my backyard! When I was in my last year of my undergrad I needed a change. My best friend knew this, of course, and called me immediately when she saw a flyer for the Walt Disney World College Program. This was an internship working for Disney, and it’s not always that easy to get into.
Luckily, I did. Better yet, luckily I got a great “role.” I can admit that not knowing where in Disney they were going to put me made me a little nervous. But like I said, I got lucky. I ended up working the most famous street of all – Main Street, U.S.A. at the Magic Kingdom. I say I got lucky because there are other roles which demand more from you like working the attractions, being a custodial Cast Member, working in Food & Beverage, merchandise, etc. I ended up as a ticket greeter and parade audience control.
Main Street, U.S.A
What exactly did I do? Well, I first started as a ticket greeter where I basically became the first face you’d see walking into the park. I’d take your ticket, help you with directions, hand out maps, fix ticket issues, etc. From ticket greeter, or “park greeter” as Disney calls it, I moved on to parade audience control. This is where I stayed for most of my internship.
In parade audience control, you are responsible for entertaining guests, assisting with questions and directions, and most of all – maintaining the safety for guests and entertainers while on the parade route. I absolutely loved being a parade audience control Cast Member. I loved working on Main Street. I mean who can say they worked on a street with a Castle at the end? I can.
Once I became a trainer for parade audience control, I also became a Conductor on the Walt Disney World Steam Trains. For me this was huge. I love the trains, even more now that I know to respect and drive them. After conducting for a few months, I was bumped up to driving the train or what’s called an Engineer. This, hands down, is my absolute favorite job I’ve ever had, especially with Disney (don’t get me wrong, I love my current job and the fact I’m backstage but there’s nothing like driving the Steam Trains.
Moving on at Disney
Once I hit my one year full-time, I had already interviewed and been offered a role as a Resort Concierge. I welcomed it with open arms at the time because I was pregnant with my Angel baby, Enzo, and it was exceedingly less pressure and heat than driving the Steam Trains. I worked at Pop Century all through my pregnancy and a few months after I came back as a Resort Concierge. I was given the opportunity to make magic for the guest and really help people make the best of their vacation to Disney.
From Pop Century, I joined the current department I’m working in, I became a Time and Attendance Associate as it was known at the time. I answered phone calls, I assisted with research on paychecks, I helped manage Cast Member’s time and pay, as well as their record cards (the point system is huge here). I did that for nine months before I was promoted to my current role as a Compliance Specialist where I’ve been for two and a half years now.
As a Compliance Specialist I run and create daily audits to monitor time and pay issues, we do research requests for departments like Labor Relations, Employee Relations, Compensation, Payroll, etc. I enjoy what I do and I’ve made great friends doing so.
In the future, hopefully sometime soon, I hope to transition over to Human Resources or Casting (where the hiring is done). I am currently going into my last semester as a Graduate Student at Nova Southeastern for my Masters in Science for Human Resource Management. With this I hope to extend my career at Disney for at least a couple more years, if not longer.
I’ve been very lucky, blessed, and grateful for all my experiences at Disney and I don’t think I’d change a thing. I enjoy my job and I have fun doing it. Again, who doesn’t like having Disney in their backyard? Come on now. I can’t wait to see what else this Disney adventure brings my way and I look forward to whatever it is that comes.