As you walk around EPCOT’s World Showcase, the Cast Members who work there are happy to share their stories and facts about their respective homelands with you. It fosters the illusion that you really are in a foreign country.
Today’s guest is Emma, who came to Disney World from the United Kingdom to work in… the United Kingdom! Fancy that.
JEFF: How did you become part of Disney’s International Program?
EMMA: I think very much like those who do the College program there in the States… I was recruited! I saw an advertisement while at University, and thought “How brilliant! I want to do that!” We had a representative come speak to those interested, and she sold me right away. The words “Come work for Disney…” weren’t even out of her mouth, and I was saying “Where do I sign?”
JEFF: Do they automatically place Program participants in the World Showcase, or can you ask to work somewhere else?
EMMA: I believe, for the most part, that it’s more of a ‘preferred’ thing. They would prefer you work in your countries’ pavilion in Epcot. If all the positions are currently filled at the moment you’ll be there, then they place you elsewhere.
A lot of the people I worked with didn’t like that so much, but I didn’t mind. I won’t lie, I was a bit homesick, so being there made me feel at home again. I did have a friend in the Program with me, but she was placed over in Fantasyland. I guess if you can’t work in the UK Pavilion, then Fantasyland is the next best thing to being there!
JEFF: Be honest. How authentic is the UK Pavilion compared to home?
EMMA: Oh, goodness, very! It was like I never left, oddly enough. The weather is a bit better, though. The styles vary, of course, from all different sorts and time periods and locations. But it’s a good combination of them all, and it feels very much like home.
On my time off, I would visit the other pavilions, and in those representing countries I have actually visited, I was very much impressed. Disney did do a good job in replicating these places, so they should be commended for that!
JEFF: What did you do while working there?
EMMA: A little bit of everything. I worked at the Rose & Crown often, and enjoyed that. I liked watching Illuminations with the guests. When we’d get guests right from England or Scotland, they’d always come to the pub for a drink. Again, it was like being a home all over again. On a few occasions, they’d get a little rowdy, and we’d be singing some traditional songs, while other guests look at us like we were crazy, but we always had fun.
I did work in the other shops, too. Toy Soldier was my favorite, though. I’d often get into scraps with the young boys who would come in. My manager often caught me in the midst of a fierce wooden sword battle!
JEFF: Do you think the UK Pavilion offers things the other Pavilions do not?
EMMA: Quiet, actually. That’s the first thing that comes to mind. I don’t think a lot of guests realize all the little nooks and crannies of it, so they miss out on some things. There’s a lovely garden, a little maze, and things like that. A lot of people rush right past it sometimes, not really taking the time to explore.
So it was nice to sit back there on break sometimes and take an actual break. Often, no one would even bother me, because they wouldn’t even know I was there! Great little hideaway for those folks looking to relax a bit and get away from the hustle of the crowds.
JEFF: If the opportunity arose, would you work there again?
EMMA: Absolutely. And I am, actually! I’m moving to the States in a few months, back to the Orlando area. I’ll be reapplying for a position. This time, though, not as part of the International Program, but on my own.
As much as I loved my time in the UK Pavilion, I’m going to request to work elsewhere. Time to give something else a bit of a go, you know?
A big thank you to Emma for talking with me from across the pond. I’ll see you back at Walt Disney World soon!
Don’t forget come back each week to hear more of the magic directly From the Mouth of the Mouse.
Tickets are now on sale for the
EPCOT 30 YEAR ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION!
Come celebrate EPCOT’s 30th Anniversary in style with a live taping of MiceChat’s Communicore Weekly! Join co-hosts Jeff Heimbuch & George Taylor, along with MiceChat’s Dusty Sage, Kevin Yee, and the Communicore Weekly Orchestra, for a fun-filled night of fandom and frivolity as they tape a special hour long episode of the hit show, Communicore Weekly.
Join us on the evening of Saturday, September 29th 2912 in the Norway Pavilion Special Events Lounge in EPCOT’s World Showcase for this one of a kind event!
Your ticket includes:
- Admission into the live taping of CW in the Norway Pavilion of EPCOT (note: admission into the park is NOT included)!
- Meet special guest, Ron Schneider, the original Dreamfinder!
- Decadent dessert reception!
- Short scavenger hunt hosted by Kevin Yee before the show will be available to those who would like to participate (prizes will be awarded)!
- Prizes, giveaways and more!
- The chance to be a part of EPCOT and Communicore Weekly history!
- Endless Five Legged Goats and perhaps even a real life Bathroom Break!
- Exclusive late night ride after park closing on a selected EPCOT attraction to cap off the evening!
For more tickets and more information, be sure to visit MiceChat.com/store!
If you are, or know, a Cast Member who would like to share some of their stories and possibly be featured right here on MiceChat, please email me at [email protected]. I’d love to hear from you!
You can read older columns of From The Mouth Of The Mouse here!
Jeff can help you plan your perfect Disney vacation with Fairy Godmother Travel! Call him at 732-278-7404 or email him at [email protected] for a free, no-obligation quote for Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, Aulani or Adventures By Disney.
Jeff also writes a MiceChat column titled The 626. We invite you to check it out!
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