The Disney Leadership Experience is a program that gives students a hands on experience to be the leaders that will shape tomorrow. During the fall semester, a small cohort of students are chosen to engage in multiple leadership workshops, building a foundation of leadership principles and a shared philosophy. Workshops include topics focusing on to modeling the way, inspiring a shared vision, challenging the process, enabling others to act, and encouraging those around them.

Following the fall sessions, students will take part in a five-day experience at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL attending three Disney Youth Education Series: College Edition workshops. These educational programs focus on Leadership Strategies, Techniques of Teamwork, and Design Thinking. Students will understand how Disney develops leaders and creates magical experiences for their guests and cast members while connecting it back to their own leadership experiences on campus. Students will engage through group learning and individual educational breakout sessions, participate in experiential activities in the Disney Theme Parks, and develop an action plan for accomplishing their student leader and career goals.

Information on this program will be available at the beginning of the fall semester.

Unfortunately, the Disney Leadership Experience will not happen in the fall of 2020. The program will begin again fall 2021. 

The following are the intended outcomes for students taking part in this leadership experience:

  • Understand elements of team dynamics, identify key challenges teams face, and develop a strategic plan to address them
  • Understand the need for building consensus on a team and an individual’s responsibility in achieving it
  • Articulate the value of encouraging and supporting individual strengths and talents on a team
  • Share critical environmental elements that a leader must provide for a truly creative team to thrive
  • Articulate the pervasive and critical need for clear and precise communication from a leader to their team, as well as the necessity for a 360° communication flow within a team
  • Have insights into the nature of confidentiality and the need for a leader to properly identify the level of confidentiality required by various types of information
  • Describe discussed leadership styles, give examples, and identify which are closest to their own style
  • Develop strategic plan for great leadership and effective team communication
  • Identify and apply Disney Key Concepts for Strategic Leadership, Teamwork, and Creative Discontent

Information Sessions were held in early September. For a copy of the presentation, please contact Steve or Arianna at the contact information noted below. 

The application period is now closed.

Program Details:

  • Fall Leadership Sessions will be held on Tuesdays from 6:30 - 9 p.m. on the following dates: October 8, November 5, and December 3. Students are required to be at every session for the entirety of the session.
  • The date of the on-site Disney World leadership experience are Friday, January 3, 2020 through Tuesday, January 7, 2020. Students are required to be with the group for the entirety of this experience. 
  • The estimated cost per person is $1,450 and includes travel, hotel, Disney Park Hopper passes, admittance to three Disney Youth Education Series: College Edition workshops, and a meal stipend.

An expectation of this program is that every member of the cohort will take part in fundraising during the fall semester to bring the costs of the program down for the group. 

For questions or more information, please contact the program coordinators: 

Stephen E Pagios

Director of Student Engagement
Student Engagement

Arianna Gulbis

Assistant Director for Residential Education
Duffy Academic Center, Suite 145
Residence Life