The Start of Something New…

The only good way to title this blog post, was to quote High School Musical. Because, for me, becoming a Photopass Photographer, truly is the start of something new.

Sure, I have a degree in Art from The University of Iowa, and I’ve taken a few photography courses here and there. But I’ve never been what a tourist or some other folks might refer to as a “professional photographer.” And to be quite honest, I’m not sure I can consider myself as such. But being a Disney Photopass Photographer, to most guests, that’s just what I am to them. Which to me, is crazy talk.

Being a “professional” or not aside, my new job is unlike any other I’ve had. My first ever job was as a waitress at a local restaurant. Then I bounced from retail to retail, while also being a rock climbing instructor for 2 years in college. So this job, is truly the start of something new, and I couldn’t be happier.

I am only a little over 2 weeks into my new role, and I cannot express enough how thankful I am to my new Magic Kingdom family. Every cast member I’ve met, Photopass and other roles alike, have been so welcoming and helpful. I was so nervous going from working in a resort for a year to the intimidating Magic Kingdom, leaving my Art of Animation family (my DAARlings), and taking on a brand new, outdoor role.

IMG_1008

The first time I was on Main Street by myself outside of my core training, was fantastic, but extremely exhausting. I definitely took for granted how grueling it is being outside in the heat for 8+ hours.

I got position at the entrance in front of the Train Station, and wow, was it hot. There was not a speck of shade in sight, and as someone who wasn’t used to the heat, I was struggling. I had forgotten my hat, so the sun was just beating down on me, and I was going through my water fast. But this is where a handful of Main Entrance Operations and Security Cast Members went above and beyond, to help me through the heat. We had never met before, much less even had a passing-by conversation. But a Main Entrance cast member came up to me with a damp towel to put on my forehead and neck, which she did so periodically throughout the few hours I was stationed there. A security cast member even came by to refill my water bottle with cold water. They didn’t know me, they weren’t in my line of business, but they went out of their way to help a cast member who was earning their ears and struggling with the heat. For that, I am beyond grateful. Not to mention every Photopass cast member I’ve met has taken the time to introduce themselves, and offer me any help if I might need it.

I’m slowly getting adjusted to the high heat and my location as time passes, but I am so thankful to have had such a warm welcome into the Magic Kingdom. I’m really looking forward to this new adventure!

Advertisements

My New Role!!!

If you follow my blog, or watch my YouTube videos, you’d know I’ve been hinting at my new role! Better yet, if you follow me on Instagram, you already know! After spending 11 months in Disney’s Art of Animation Resort as a merchandise hostess and trainer, I’m moving on to a bigger kingdom! Drum roll please!

My new role is…………………….

Photopass Photographer!!!

Here’s a photo from my second day of training! They wanted us to see examples of magic shots. Since we were earning our ears, we were not allowed to take pictures of guests. So we got to be the models instead!

PhotoPass_Visiting_STUDIO_387128693570 (2)

Even though I’ve been a merchandise cast member for about a year now, and that was my role as a CP, Photopass  was what I had wanted ever since I applied for my college program in January of 2015. So after working through my CP, and continuing on as a seasonal cast member, I waited patiently for a transfer, hoping a spot would open up with my name on it. And lone behold, in July of 2016 it did!

As I’m writing this post, I’m currently in the midst of my training. The first day was a lot of classroom learning with a mini tour of backstage areas in Animal Kingdom. Day 2 was a touch more classroom learning, and then we were off for some touring and practice shooting of Hollywood Studios! The coming days will consist of some classes at Disney University, and then finally onto more hands-on training in my new home! The Magic Kingdom! 

I’ve been waiting so long for this next chapter, andI couldn’t be more thankful for it. I felt myself falling into a rut here in Florida, and this is a very welcome and exciting change. It can be a little over-whelming at times, but I’m ready for it.

I’ll see you real soon Magic Kingdom!

DCP Merchandise Haul!

Needless to say, living in Disney for 9 months, there is quite the temptation to buy all the cute Disney merchandise you see on an every day basis (especially being a merchandise Cast Member). So here I am, sharing with you all almost everything  I bought during my Disney College Program! I’m still in Florida, and still a Cast Member, so I’m sure there will be much more merchandise purchased in my future!

Appreciate the Magic

I’ve been a cast member for just about 8 months now, and one thing I learned relatively quickly is that some days are more magical than others.

Don’t get me wrong, working for the The Walt Disney Company is something I wouldn’t trade for the world. But one thing to remember, is that it’s still a job. You have your good days, and you have your bad ones. One thing to always remember is to appreciate the magic.

Sometimes for me that is as simple as spending a day in the park with my roommate or some friends. Other times it’s taking a moment to step back and think about it from a guest’s perspective, or even trying to create a little magic myself. Creating the magic, and making dreams come true is what Disney does best, and I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of that.

making magic

As a cast member (on the bad days), I often feel that guests can sometimes forget I’m only human. There are some things out of even my control. As a resort merchandise cast member often times guests will treat me as if I am working concierge or front desk, which are in fact, very different roles from my own and require much different training. For instance, when they ask me something I cannot help with, like getting something for their room, I refer them to the front desk. On several times I have been verbally abused for not taking care of them immediately in that moment, and they demand why I cannot take care of it. And unfortunately it doesn’t end there.

I won’t go into gory details, but the take away here is that not all days are magical in the eyes of a cast member. I love working for disney, and some of the best memories of college program are creating those magical moments for guests. But I think it’s important for both cast members and guests alike to truly appreciate the magic, and understand that it’s not something that happens everyday. It’s magical for a reason, and should be cherished when it comes into our lives.

However, on the good days, I couldn’t feel more happy to be here, and love what I’m doing! One of the things I love most about working at a resort is that I get to see guests continuously throughout the week. One of my favorite things is when a guest goes out of their way to say goodbye to me as they bid their vacation farewell. Kids come to hug me goodbye, and some guests even want their picture taken with me. The appreciation I feel from them, and knowing I helped make a part of their vacation makes it all worth it.

As my college program comes to an end, I’m looking forward to a potential career with Disney and to continue helping create that magic for guests and cast members alike. I’m anxious for what’s coming next, but I’m also excited to dive into the professional world. I’m hoping for the best, and hoping a little disney magic, and maybe even some pixie dust, floats my way in hope of starting a new career!

 

What in the World am I Doing.

It’s been awhile since I’ve written on my blog. I’ve been so preoccupied with other things, it pretty much fell of my priority list. But a lot has happened in a month, and it’s about time I shared what in the world I’ve been doing since I last posted, and snippets of social media don’t always do me justice…

I’m not sure if I ever formally announced it, but I’ve extended my program! I’ll now be staying with Disney until May with hope of pursuing a job or professional internship with the company after. I extended into my same role at my same location. Lucky for me I love my “DAARling” family!

Another fun fact? I’m moving out of CP housing! Although I’ve had an overall good experience with housing, being 22 years old I need my own space. And since I plan to stay in Florida, it makes sense for me to get a real apartment and finally settle in. One of my roommates from my CP apartment will also be living with me!

One disappointing aspect of the program is that I won’t be home for Christmas, so missing my family is especially difficult this time of year. I was lucky enough to have Christmas scheduled off, but what that really means to me is that I’ll just be at my apartment alone, which will weigh pretty heavy on my heart. Just being in Florida alone, it doesn’t feel like the holidays.

But lastly I have some more positive news! I am officially becoming a Disney Trainer! Being a CP this is a pretty big opportunity and responsibility to be given to me. I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity, especially because I hope to stay with the company. I look forward to becoming a trainer and potentially even training new CP’s!

261967_10154390955278942_1300356513490530151_n

Even though this is probably one of the biggest transitions and most stressful times in my life, I’m pretty proud of myself for doing it. Moving my whole life to Florida wasn’t easy, but I really feel like I’ve found my place here.