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Her Practically Perfect Career

Magic Kingdom Job is Dream Come True for UCM Alumna
By Heather Hickerson

Everyone has unforgettable childhood memories of their favorite Disney character. For Marie Nelson Masakayan, it was Mary Poppins. "I remember seeing the movie in the theater with my parents and that following Christmas, I got a Mary Poppins' umbrella and raincoat. I liked her because she had that cool bag with all the neat things that she pulled
out of it for the kids."

Whether Mary Poppins, Mickey Mouse, the Seven Dwarfs, the Little Mermaid or hundreds of others, Disney characters are unmatched for their lasting influence. For Masakayan, a 1989 Central Missouri alumna, it began with Mary Poppins, but in her job now as vice president of global creative operations for the Walt Disney Company, it encompasses much more.

Photo by Ryan Astamendi, courtesy of Disney

Explaining her position within the company, she says, "I oversee creative operations for the global creative team in consumer products as well as our Culture of Innovation. We are responsible for creating artwork, branding, packaging and design portfolios for our licensees to develop products for our franchises." Simply put, every time people buy an item with a Disney tag, whether from the Disney store or a major U.S. retailer, Masakayan's team helped develop it.

She works for Disney Consumer Products, a division of the company that covers films, cable channels, books, home products, fashions, food, health and beauty products, toys and stationery.This includes everything from Hannah Montana backpacks and Jonas Brothers t-shirts to Buzz Lightyear bedding and Cinderella slippers.

For this midwestern woman, her Magic Kingdom job is a dream come true, stemming from her days as a student at UCM.

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