Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The DCP Series: Done.

"All the adversity I've had in my life, all my struggles and obstacles have strengthened me. You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you."

- Walt Disney

Walt was right, as he usually is when it comes to life experience. And four months later, I can wholeheartedly say that's what the Disney College Program was for me: a life experience. The DCP journey is a voyage of self-discovery and a rollercoaster of emotions. It's a constant reminder that every day can throw you through an unexpected loop or a sharp turn in another direction. But again, that's life.

The program isn't all stress and worry about what's to come. There's also an element of ever-growing excitement, a promise that tomorrow, while unknown, won't be anything like today. Each new day has the potential to be something incredible, something that many might not ever have the opportunity to see or hear or do, something...well, magical. But the magic and what made the entire experience was interacting with other CPs, making friends, and living in one of the most exciting cities in the US. Because if it weren't for that, the work and the idiotic management and the overall anal vibe that the Walt Disney Company exudes from its every orifice would be utterly intolerable. I won't get into the details of work or the daily grind of working for the Mouse, but just understand it's not glamorous and nothing like the recruiting videos.

I could talk all day about my mixed feelings about the various aspects of the program, but to sum it up...

- DON'T do the program if you're looking for an internship to learn a trade from.
- DON'T do the program if you think it will teach you anything that is directly applicable to a future job.
- DO the program if you want to get away from school/home/work for awhile.
- DO the program if you want to meet new people and have new experiences you wouldn't otherwise get the chance to experience.
- DO the program if you're looking for a one-of-a-kind life experience.

Would I do it over again if I could go back? Without a doubt. But would I ever consider doing another program? Not a chance. It's safe to assume that, by the end of the program, every CP knows whether he or she belongs at Disney. My verdict? A resounding no. Yours? That's entirely up to you.