I Finished My Disney College Program, But Here Are the Main Reasons My Friends Quit

One of the BEST decisions I ever made was applying to the Disney College Program (DCP).

Cast Members make the magic happen!

Throughout my time at Disney World, I had lots of friends who self-terminated only a few weeks into their program. (I even self-terminated and left a week early, which I’ll get into. BUT, since I left only one week early, we’ll say I finished my program.) You might be wondering why someone would just abandon a role at Disney World to go back home. “It’s just a job, you’ve gotta push through!” Well, I had several friends term very early on in the program, and I’m here to talk about the biggest reasons why a lot of them left.

Let’s jump right into it!

They wanted to be home for the holidays.

When you select your arrival and departure date for your DCP, it isn’t very customizable. For example, the option that worked best for me and my college graduation was to arrive on August 1st and depart on January 5th.

Haunted Mansion

So, I was expected to work on both Thanksgiving and Christmas. I struggled with that from the beginning. I did work Thanksgiving, and for me, it was a horrible experience. Visitors on this day were particularly rude as they had very high expectations for their Thanksgiving vacation (rightfully so). However, high crowds led to unmet expectations which visitors took out on many Cast Members.

Alien Swirling Saucers

After this experience, I decided that I would not be working on Christmas, as I didn’t want my favorite holiday to be spent upset over mean things visitors said to me and my coworkers. So, I left the day before Christmas and went home to my folks!

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror

Many of my friends did the exact same thing, and those in other parks/locations who didn’t have bad experiences still left just to be with their families.


As we all know, Disney World is just a playground for GERMS. There are many surfaces we all touch and many shared spaces. Cast Members have to be extra careful not to get sick, because it can be especially difficult to recover.

Mad Tea Party

Long hours, inconsistent sleep schedules, and the Florida sun can really impact someone trying to recover from an illness. Plus, Cast Members’ eating habits can be all over the place, too!

Kali River Rapids

I have many friends that got the flu or a really bad cold and just weren’t able to recover. This led to calling out so many times they got terminated or they just self-terminated to go home and rest.

Visitors were too much.

Remember when I mentioned the Thanksgiving experience earlier? Yeah, some folks are like that on a daily basis. The visitors could be really mean. Of course, there were amazing and kind folks that made up for it, but some people have lower tolerances for emotional situations.

EPCOT Crowds

A lot of my friends ended their programs after a series of (or just one really bad) instance. It stinks but it’s the truth!

Crowds at Haunted Mansion

Be nice to Cast Members! And if you go out of your way to be kind to them, THANK YOU!

Bad roommate situations.

When doing the DCP, you can opt to live in Disney-provided housing at Flamingo Crossings Village, where only other CPs are allowed to live and where rent is already taken out of your paycheck. You can also opt to live off Disney property!

Flamingo Crossings Village

There’s only one problem that causes a lot of anxiety among participants: choosing a roommate. You must choose roommates ahead of time, and you’re typically choosing from people you don’t know. A lot of folks share “about me” posts on Facebook and Instagram to try to find potential roomie matches. You can also go totally random and allow Disney to pick for you.

Cast Member MacKenna

Regardless, you can end up in pretty bad situations. I had many friends who had unideal living situations and ended up terming because of it. Whether it be because of loud or dirty roommates, a hostile environment, or just realizing the housing situation isn’t for them — I’ve had friends term for all of the above!

Of course, there are folks who experienced all these things and were able to make it to the end of their program. Every situation is different, and you’ll get absolutely no judgment from us for terminating or continuing your program. We’ll continue to bring you all sorts of Disney advice, so make sure to follow along for more so that you never miss a thing.

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