Page 28 - IU Southeast Summer 2012 Mag

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Experience of a lifetime
The Disney College Experience, which
debuted in 1981, is an opportunity
for college students enrolled full- or
part-time in an accredited college or
university in the United States to get
one-of-a-kind living, earning, and
learning experience
from working at
Disney. Participants are paid an hourly
wage, live in provided housing with
other students, and get valuable, on-
the-job experience.
Recruiter Irshaun Pinckney has been
recruiting IU students to participate in
the Disney College Experience since
2011. A former intern himself, he
knows firsthand what can be gained
from working with the company.
“Students often talk about how they
have matured on the program,”
Pinckney said. “How they have come
back changed and ready for the real
world. They share with me stories of
the lifelong friends they made. Stories
will differ a great deal, but all students
share with me unforgettable memories
that they say they will always keep with
them.”
Creating magical moments
For Hall, an IU Southeast sophomore
from Louisville, Walt Disney World
in Orlando, Fla., is more than just an
amusement park. Since the age of
seven, she and her family visited the
park annually – more than 10 times
before she entered college.
Hall began working in February 2012,
but she still enrolled at IU Southeast as
a political science major for the spring
2012 semester. She only took one
online course so that she could truly
focus on getting the most out of her six-
month internship.
At Disney World, Hall worked in theater
attractions at Animal Kingdom. She
explained that the most interesting and
challenging part of her experience was
getting to know how to work and live
with people she’s never met.
Hall also said that living on her own
for the first time was the best way to
experience life as a working adult.
“I absolutely love it. I’m living on my
own with three other roommates,” Hall
said. “I’m getting to know other people,
getting to deal with the stresses of
living with people you don’t know.”
Hall generally worked 35 hours a
week at the park, and her housing was
paid for out of the money she earned
each week. In addition to her weekly
responsibilities for Disney, she put in
several hours of studying for her online
class. But in her free time, she went to
the different parks, hung out with her
roommates, caught up on laundry, and
went grocery shopping.
As a Disney intern, she felt that every
person, every job, and every role
had importance, because ultimately
everyone was working toward one goal:
the creation of “magical moments.”
Hall still remembers the first time she
felt something magical while at Disney
World as a guest.
“My (favorite) was actually during a
castle projection show last December.
It was before the fireworks show. The
show and the pictures of everyone
from the park brought tears to my eyes.
There was a father and son in front
of me and the son said ‘How did they
do that?’ and the dad said, without
missing a beat: ‘It’s magic, son.’”
Hall felt it was her responsibility to
create magical moments.
“I created an awesome magical
moment for an autistic child,” she said.
“The boy wanted to hold part of this
rope during a parade, and he held on
Ashley Adams poses with Snow White and the
Dwarfs during a break from work. Photo courtesy
of Ashley Adams.
April Hall and a co-worker outside the Finding
Nemo attraction at Disney World. Photo courtesy
of April Hall.
Lauren Ogburn celebrates her graduation from
the Disney College Experience with Minnie and
Mickey. Photo courtesy of Lauren Ogburn.