by Chandler Witzigreuter
First off, I would like to apologize for not writing for a while. Lots has happened since my last piece! I have officially been in Florida and participating in the Disney College Program for three months!! I survived the Spring Break rush that lasted almost a month and then was quickly followed by Easter. I have made so many friends, and I am starting to feel like I’m in a good rhythm at the Emporium, and in Disney World in general.
About a month into my program I was stock trained, so that is pretty much all I do. Stocking is great because I feel like you are more open and readily available to the Guests. I feel like I have been given the opportunity to get to know my Leaders, Coordinators, and fellow Cast Members better… and I can almost comfortably say that most of the people at the Emporium know who I am too; and that can be interpreted as both good and bad.
I feel like I have grown some as a person in the three months that I have been here, and I have started to change into the person I want to be. My program isn’t even close to being done yet, and I know that it has opened doors for me already. A lot of that is thanks to the amazing leadership team at the Emporium; specifically my CP Champion, Kaitlin. She has helped me realize what my strong points are and what my weaknesses are that I can work on. I’ve had some issues that I needed help with, I knew I could go to her for help, and that I can trust her. There are so many people at the Emporium that I completely trust; if at anytime I have a problem or I need to talk to someone, I know that I can go to almost anyone for help.
On the rare occasion that I’m not at work, I’m hanging out with my friends in the parks. I have gone to the beach, to a paint party on the party bus, to one of the water parks, resort hopping, to the movies, to a concert, and a whole bunch of other things. Some friends and I recently tackled the Kitchen Sink at Beaches and Cream at the Beach Club Resort; I suggest that you do it, but don’t eat a lot before you go! I always have fun hanging out with all of my friends at various places because it gives you the opportunity to know who they are outside of work and vice versa.
On May 8th, Disney Internships and Programs held a party for all the CPs, ICPs, Culinary Students, and Professional Interns at Typhoon Lagoon at night called the “Starlight Splash.” It was so much fun! They had everything open like it is for Guests, but it was even better because there was free food!!! And not just regular boring food, but free Mickey Bars, Mickey Ice Sandwiches, fruit bars, chips and salsa, and all sorts of gourmet Disney restaurant food. They had a DJ who was giving away free stuff and playing music so we could dance on the beach, there were pirates walking around, palm readers, and then a huge fireworks show at the end of the night! It was a great night spent with my friends outside of work, and with other CPs!
Whatever you do during your program, enjoy it!!! Get to know people and go out and have fun. Go to dinner one night and then go to a park and watch the fireworks. I can’t tell you how many times my friends and I went somewhere and then ended up at the Magic Kingdom to watch Wishes and the Electrical Parade! Make the best of everything, and be willing to meet new people because that’s when you will be the happiest! Also, don’t be afraid of change; I was terrified by the idea of change and I still am, but I’m coming around to the idea. I know that there will be a lot of change soon to come when some of my closest friends’ programs end and they go back home. Having them go back home will be one biggest changes that I have faced since moving here, but I know that the friendships that I am making with them will last a lifetime, and these people will always be there for me.
Basically, whatever you do, have fun! Spread pixie dust and magic, because I guarantee that the moment that you “go above and beyond” for a Guest and make there trip memorable, you will feel great about what you did, and you will love your job even more.
Have a Magical Day!
Chandler Witzigreuter is a 19 year old from Fort Wayne, IN, who has been obsessed with all things Disney ever since she was very young. She began the Disney College Program Spring Advantage Session in February.