Katie Earns Her Ears: My Secret Walt Disney World Cast Member Diary by Katie Hudson is the fourth volume in the "Earning Your Ears" series which allows former Disney College Program participants to share their experiences. In this recounting, Katie a student from Texas spent a fall working at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe. But for Katie not everything is all work as she attempts to stay connected with her campus back home and make the most out of her limited time in Orlando. Additionally, Katie's journey includes a tense roommate situation that uncovers how rigid Disney procedures can be for the young people in the program.
For me what I generally want to know what about these books and their voice is different. First, Katie is an introvert. So being on stage all the time can be draining for her, and I am sure other cast members with like personalities. Katie's story makes it clear you can still get a lot out of the program and be enthusiastic without needing to change who you are. Second, Katie's social life gives some great ideas for those who want to enjoy everything Orlando has to offer. In fact, through her experience one can learn how to work in the Disney College Program but still save money at Universal parks. Third, these experience books often make it clear how regimented living in Disney housing can be with rules and inspections. Katie's journey includes an incident with her roommates that provides an striking example of why one must follow Disney's requirements to the letter in order to keep from being termed, leaving or being sent away, from the program.
If I was to recommend this volume to any potential Disney College Program participants it would be for those who want the Disney experience but are afraid to put themselves out there because of their introverted nature. The book is a journal format which is easy to read. I personally read this book over a period of months with breaks between other books and I was never lost when I returned to the offering. And I would likely recommend that like me, that one read it in the Kindle format due to the ease of quick note taking and cheaper price.
Katie Earns Her Ears: My Secret Walt Disney World Cast Member Diary by Katie Hudson reminds us that not all Disney fans and Disney College Program participants are outgoing extroverts. Some of us, including me, are fun-loving introverts. And those like us can still learn from the Disney College Program experience.