MFA Internship Spotlight: Juan Diego Accepts Internship at Walt Disney Imagineering

March 1, 2023

MFA Internship Spotlight: Juan Diego Accepts Internship at Walt Disney Imagineering

Photo of Juan Diego

Congratulations to MFA graduate student Juan Diego, who has accepted a 6-month Show Programming internship at Walt Disney Imagineering in Glendale, California. He will work with animatronic figures, light programming, projections, and other show elements. This internship fulfills a longstanding childhood dream to work as a theme park designer.  

Juan’s interest in Imagineering began in 2019 when he participated in the Disney College Program at Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida. Juan was an attraction cast member, involved with running the attraction Na’vi River Journey, making guests feel immersed in The World of Avatar. The experience exposed him to the world of Imagineering and the high caliber work done at theme parks and solidified his future goals. 

 After receiving his BFA in Animation from Savannah College of Art and Design, Juan had his sight set on Digital Animation and Interactive Media (DAIM) at Ohio State. He had met Design Professor Maria Palazzi back in high school when he was exploring undergraduate programs, and she introduced him to the DAIM program and the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design (ACCAD). Juan knew the MFA program would help him achieve his career aspirations. 

Professor Palazzi connected Juan to a Design MFA alumna, Cara Malek, who is a Principal Show Programmer at Walt Disney Imagineering. With their guidance and support, Juan strengthened his experience with game engines, microcontrollers, and animatronic figure development. His dedication and diligence have paid off. 

Juan would like to thank Professor Palazzi and the DAIM program for helping him develop the necessary skillset needed to have a dream become reality. Please join us in congratulating Juan on becoming a part of the next generation of Imagineers!  


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