Disney College Program Ending Abruptly; College Program Cast Members Being Sent Home Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) Theme Park Closures

    Disney will be ending all Disney College Program participant programs and sending participants home once the theme parks close due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) next week.

    Disney will be closing many of the Disney Program housing complexes and requires Disney College Program participants to be out by March 18th. The programs impacted will be the Disney College Program, Disney Culinary Program, Disney Cultural Exchange Program, and Disney Academic Exchange Program. All Disney College Program Cast Members will be paid through the end of March, and weekly housing deductions will be waived. All Disney College Program participants will be given successful completion marks. Here’s a look at the email sent out to Disney College Program Cast Members.

    With the closure of the Walt Disney World theme parks, Cast Members will be staffed at the resorts and transportation positions in addition to required security. The Walt Disney World theme parks will be closed through March 31, 2020, as of publish time, and final staffing decisions are being made this weekend. While some Cast Members will still have to work to maintain the resorts and transportation, there will be no College Program Cast Members working during the closures. Decisions about future College Program staffing hasn’t been made yet.

    As always, keep checking back with us here at BlogMickey.com as we continue to bring you the latest news and photos from around the Disney Parks.

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    1. Nice of them to VERY suddenly decide that all of these kids have 4 days to vacate their rooms. As of yesterday (March 13) they would be kept on and continue to be paid while being more or less on call to work at the resorts. Now they have to be out of their rooms by the 18th. We just spent a small fortune relocating our daughter to Orlando AND she gave up a semester of college to attend the program.

    2. Students have been told to be out by Wednesday. You have kids there on location from around the world. THIS IS TOO OF A SHORT NOTICE!! Not a good choice for a company like this. My daughter will be coming home with no job, losing a semester of college, and ending her life long dream.


    3. Such a bait and switch…they made the initial announcement where everyone (the paying guests) were sad but knew it was the right thing to close the parks. Then they crushed the lowest paid, most overworked segment of their staff knowing most guests would never see that. Of course, it would be expensive to keep those students on and Disney does not have the financial wherewithal to do that…hahaha.

    4. Utterly appalling treatment of these college interns, they made significant personal sacrifice to participate in this program. I understand the park closures and job loss but 4 days to make other living arrangements is absurd.

    5. You do realize that the situation is very fluid right now and it’s constantly changing. It’s not like Disney has had to deal with something like this before. It’s a bit of learning curve for everyone right now.

    6. She “gave up” a semester to attend the program because I assume she wanted to, but, she did not actually “gave up the semester” because she should be getting credit for it. She was not forced to do the program by Disney, or to spent a small fortune to do it. I did the program and stayed at the apartments Disney provided, which are completely furnished. The only money I spent to move there was my plane ticket and then the monthly rent there. I realize that every situation is different, but, don’t blame Disney for your daughter or your decisions in how to move there. As the person underneath your comment very well wrote: “It’s not like Disney has had to deal with something like this before. It’s a bit of learning curve for everyone right now.”

    7. My son is signed up to start in August. I wonder if it will be delayed. I hope we know soon so he can still register for classes at school if not.

    8. Shameful. Disney did this on the sly. Big Grand Display of PAYING EVERYONE…and then today every worker in these programs was told go home and pack. Plus, the new travel ban to Europe includes UK and IRELAND…so not a chance for these workers to leave the US any time soon. The Orlando Sentinel article “Disney Suspends College Program” posted at 5:41 today March 14th. has total strangers, state representatives, car rental agencies, storage facilities, packers, churches, drivers…so many reaching out to help protect and assist these abandoned Disney workers…so proud of Orlando and ashamed that Disney thought this stupid process was the FIX.
      These international students PAY for their interviews, travel and program fees…to work like dogs, grabbing any overtime they can…we would call them indentured servants back in the day…all to be abandoned by the big WALT DISNEY WORLD CORPORATION. Ashamed.

    9. My daughter is in Florida with no where to go. I work in the lab at a hospital and due to short staffing am unable to just drop everything and get my daughter in 4 days.. Yes, thank you disney for the notification and time to try to get my daughter home!

    10. @NENolan but it is too soon to change a prior decision to move out and leave that quickly. Even universities are giving students options for the dorms and time to plan. While so many Americans are flooding the airports from Europe, and Trump thinking of cutting down domestic flights, and as CPs scramble to get tickets (if they cannot drive home). They may not have dealt with this before, but other organizations, programs and institutions are going through the same thing, with enough time to return home.

    11. Pretty rude of Disney. My daughter gave up a semester of college and we invested a lot to get her there and set her up in Disney.4 days to vacate is absurd. Now no job, cannot go back to school and needs to get home before they evict her.
      She is so dedicated that today is her last day to work and she is worried that if she is late they will not let her get her certificate to finish the program. I thought Disney was better than this. Hope when the reinstate program these you men and women are the first to go asked to go back and finish their program.

    12. Morales, that was one of the most insensitive responses. Yes, everyone over there wanted to be there, but the cost is variable. Flights from other countries are very expensive, factor in visa and insurance costs . Because they come from afar and had to be there by a certain check-in date, factor in a night or 2 accommodation elsewhere. So, us a parents we contributed a lot to help them because they hope to work for Disney in the future and this was a way in through networking and getting to know the company and where they may fit with their skills. This is what Disney promises to provide for them. So for you to be on your high horse and throw disparaging comments about young people who are trying to make a mark in the job market is not helpful. We looked for flights from Orlando to Australia, and the few are very expensive and were told by the sales person that they have never seen such high fares before.

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