The key to a good housing experience has very little to do with which apartment you get, and almost completely to do with your roommates. Even the best roommates can have issues, but the best way to avoid that is clear communication and boundaries. The best way to do that is to start your semester with a roommate meeting. The first week, before Traditions, is a great time to do that, you'll have plenty of free time to do that! This post will walk you through a roommate meeting plan that is sure to start you off on the right foot with your roommates!
Start your roommate meeting on the right foot, by loving one another with roommate gifts! Plan ahead of time, to do roommate gifts, so you can make or buy them ahead of time (have a plan of what to do if you have extra roommates too). Need some ideas?
I love being an alumni and part of the DCP Facebook pages because it gives me the opportunity to answer questions! Most questions I see are about housing, and how to choose your apartment. Choosing your housing complex is not like picking your dorm or house hunters, where you'll pick exactly what you want and know everything ahead of time. I'm going to walk you through the process, based on what I remember from last year, and changes I've heard about since then.
You'll be invited to select your housing preferences 2-3 weeks before your check in date, but there are things you can do in the months before that! There are two things you should do in preparation to pick your housing. I've listed these as "Step 1" and "Step 2" but I recommend doing them simultaneously.
As I begin to think about potentially returning to Disney, I've thought of a few things I want to try to improve my roommate situation. During my last program I had a lot of struggles with roommates. A lot of the issue was that I didn't have time to pick my roommates but mostly that I avoided confrontation. Looking ahead I want to avoid that this time. First of all I want to pick roommates, carefully. After that, I have some creative ideas to help foster a more encouraging and kind environment. Many of these ideas come from a little over a year ago when I participated in the Navigators' Summer Training Program (STP) in Colorado. I had the chance to live with my bible study leader and the two other girls in my bible study. It was the best roommate situation I've ever been in, and there were four of us in one room!
As I was preparing for my program a year ago, one of the questions I needed answered was "how will I grow in my faith at Disney?" As a Christian this is I question I try (though sometimes fail) to ask about every new situation I walk into. Here are some of the things I found helpful while I was at Disney.
Cru at WDW
Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) is a Christian ministry commonly found on college campuses. Cru headquarters is located in Orlando so they have a special group just for the DCP! I met my best friends through Cru. These are the friends that have done the best of continuing to stay in touch after we went our different ways. While I was there they offered many different events and activities to participate in. The main even is pizza night (with homemade pizza!) every Wednesday night. One of my favorite things was the bible studies which were held at a few different times during the week. I'd really love to lead a bible study during my next program. On Tuesdays we had Prayer & Pastries which was a fun event to pray and learn how to pray for the people around us. Another fun event was GO Day, we would go out and try to share the gospel and the love of Christ. Sometimes there were special women's and men's events too. Throughout the semester there were cool events like an epic Easter party and a beach trip! Most of all, the best part was all #crumunity. We would spontaneously go to the parks after prayer and pastries, watch movies until the wee hours of the morning after bible study, or go to Alehouse after church. To learn more about Cru at WDW like the Facebook page or join the Facebook group.
During my 2016 college program I conquered fears that have been haunting me my entire life. When I started my program I was terrified of rides that go high, spin, get wet, go fast, and definitely those that go upside down! My favorite ride was Pirates of the Caribbean ride. I refused to go on Splash Mountain, the Teacups, the Tower of Terror, and certainly any and all roller coasters.
My dear friends Robert and Sarah took me to Magic Kingdom for the first time the day after my Traditions class. After riding Pirates of the Caribbean they talked me into riding Splash Mountain (and tricked me about when the big drop many many times) and I loved it! After a snack I let them talk me into Big Thunder Mountain. While waiting in the line I got more and more scared I became but I didn't chicken out! I was not such as much a fan of this ride. I was eager to try riding it again but not for a long while.
Looking back on my experience last spring and thinking about doing it again, there are a lot of things I would do next time, things I would not do next time, and things I would keep the same. I wanted to share those things with you so you can learn from my experience.
Keep: Things I did that I would do again
I arrived almost 2 weeks ago, so I wanted to share an update on how things are going. The first week I didn't get to do much, I had a few general meetings about housing, being resort custodial, and paperwork. I had my first training class called Traditions, where I learned about the company. During that I received my name tag, the iconic sign of Disney cast member, and my card that gives me access to the parks.
The day after Traditions, Sunday, was my favorite day by far since I've been here! My new friends Robert and Sarah took me to Magic Kingdom for the first time, and we went to church that night. I had a great time finally riding attractions I've been avoiding my whole life. The day, and finally being in Magic Kingdom, was great fun, but by far the best part of the day was spending time in fellowship with these two wonderful people! I look forward to many more adventures with them!
A few other updates: I got my first choice apartment, a 6 person 3 bedroom in Chatham (although there are only 5 of us right now), which is the cheapest and closest to the buses. My roommates are nice but it's interesting because they all knew they were going to be roommates before arriving, so I was the random thrown in, so I'm kind of the outsider right now as I get to know them. I started working at my location yesterday (after 4 days of classroom type trainings) and it's going well, my coworkers are nice and spoil me a little bit. I'm excited to start working on my own in a week. All in all, everything is going well and I'm excited for the next 4 months.