The Disney College Program application process is filled with lots and lots of waiting. Whether you are waiting 15 minutes for an e-mail or 15 days to hear back, each wait is full of consistently thinking of when that e-mail will come to you. While I can’t give you any advice on how to put your phone away so you stop refreshing your e-mail for DORMS updates, I can give you some tips on what you can do after getting your acceptance. Many of these things should be done before you applied to begin with, but this serves as a way to follow-up and make sure everything is lined up.
Talk to your advisor about internship credit/how it will affect you academically
Depending on your school, some will offer internship credits, some will require you to continue to take a full course load, some have a co-op place holder, and maybe even offers things not on this list, but those listed are the most common. Your advisor should have all of the information on what you need to do to make sure that you are set to go to your college program. Before going into this meeting, you need to know what your goal is going into the DCP. Are you okay getting no credit, graduating late, etc.? Your advisor will let you know what your options are and how things will go if you go to the program. I had a place holder class, got no credit, and will be graduating a semester later. Personally, I think it’s all worth it.
Find out if Disney school courses will transfer to your school
This is also something that needs to be addressed at your meeting with your advisor. Make sure you have printed the list of courses that Disney offers during the program and take it to the meeting to review with your advisor. For me personally, none of these courses would count for credit for me, but many people I’ve met they’ve received credit for courses that align with their major. For example, I know a handful of hospitality management majors who are getting credit for Disney’s hospitality class.
Talk to your financial aid office about student loans and financial aid
If you use student loans or financial aid during college, make sure to talk to someone in the financial aid office about how everything will work out for you if you accept the program. This is something that differs person to person and definitely something you have to make sure is covered early on before you head out for your program.
Ask how you will be able to sign up for courses for the following semester
Make sure that you talk to your advisor or the registrar about how you will be able to sign up for classes next semester. If you are taking classes through your university while you are on your program, there should be something specifically set up for you through your university, but if you are going on internship credit, not for credit, or on a co-op type thing, this is definitely something you should research. For me personally, I had to talk to my advisor about what classes I plan to take Fall 2017 since I’m doing the program in Spring 2017 and I will be given the okay to get online to sign up for classes. This is definitely a blessing considering the fact that it will allow me to get into the classes that I desperately need.
Talk to your landlord about being released from your lease/subleasing/reassigning/etc.
I recently saw a frantic post by someone on the Facebook page that they hadn’t even thought about their apartment and finding someone to take over their lease. This is once again something that will vary person to person in how it can be done. I’d never heard of just being released from a lease before joining the DCP Facebook page because subleasing and reassigning where the only things I’d heard of. Definitely make sure to e-mail, call, or set up a meeting with your land lord to make sure you understand the steps for getting your lease situated.
Plan your travel method to Disney
Are you going to drive, fly, go by train, etc. If you plan on flying, I advise that you buy plane tickets as soon as you know your dates to get the lowest rates that you can. If you are driving, start planning if you are going to do all of the driving in one long day or break it up between several days. And definitely make sure to get your hotel booked. If you book early, many of the resorts on property such as Art of Animation and All Star resorts.
Find roommates or at least start talking to people
As soon as I knew my dates I jumped onto the DCP Facebook page and posted that I was accepted and wanted to find some roommates. While there are no guarantees through Disney that you will get an apartment with everyone you matched with, it is fun to spend time getting to know other people who are hoping to do the program as well. And you never know, sometimes a pair of 8 roommates all end up together.
Plan outfits for traditions
Do a little bit of research on the Disney look and then check your closet to see what you own that goes along with the guidelines. As a girly girl myself, laying out potential outfits definitely made the fact that I was going to leave for the program much more real. And let’s be honest here, made the actual process of picking out my traditions outfit much faster and less painless.
Look into restaurants/resorts to visit during your program
Once I knew my dates I jumped online and made reservations for several restaurants during the program. I was set on dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table and Be Our Guest, so those reservations were actually part of my Christmas present before I left for the program. I also looked into the resorts I hope to stay at while I am on my program and can use my discount.
Think about your bucket list
I’m a planner, so I had to plan my bucket list months in advance. While I don’t know if I’ll be able to cross everything off, at least I have an idea of where I’d like to start. And hey, I might get to Disney and laugh and realize my list should look completely different.
Have you applied to the Disney College Program? What did you do to hold yourself over during the wait after the phone interview? Is there anything you would add to this list? If you have applied and are waiting, which of these tips do you hope to use?