Tuesday, July 24, 2012

All Around George's Town

Second days are always tough. It's not much different from the first -- we are still getting used to getting used to waking up away from home, getting used to the weather, but without the shock, the magic of the first day.

Yes, second days are tough.

But everyone has to shake it off and move on ahead. After all, nothing was going to slow down, and likely, the exact opposite was going to happen. So I dragged myself awake this morning and prepared for what was coming.

Today, we visited Georgetown University for an information session and a tour of the campus. The campus itself was rather pristine and beautiful. The architecture was very reminiscent to the buildings Cornell had -- another point of nostalgia for me.
The statue of Georgetown's founder, John Carroll.
The frontal facade of Georgetown University.
At White Gravenor Hall, we parked ourselves inside the admissions office for the information session. The room was filled to capacity, forcing us to find seats scattered throughout the area. During the presentation, I was rather impressed by the variety and emphasis the school had on international affairs, government, and social justice. Of course, any college near Washington, D.C. should excel in these fields, but I was impressed nonetheless.

A history of music phonographs and music handhelds.
The tour itself was alright. We covered the dormitories, a few of the undergraduate halls, and the student services center. Despite the length of the tour, we seemed to cover only a small amount of area. While Georgetown's campus was still being expanded, space was limited due to the surrounding community. It made for a very compact campus.

In front of the President's backyard.
Wrapping up with the college tour, we took a shuttle back to a hotel and then ran after a bus heading downtown. We visited several places around the mall, including the (outside of the) White House, the National Archives, and the Museum of American History. The museum was filled to the brim with American culture, with exhibits that ranged from Kermit the Frog to the Vietnam War. The knowledge that place contained was immense and far too much to take in one hour. But we managed.
A Navajo chief's Americanized blanket.
Once we returned to the hotel and freshened up, it was off to 1789, a very popular restaurant in Georgetown. The restaurant has hosted a plethora of the influential and the well-to-do, including Joe Lieberman, German Prime Minister Angela Merkel, and even President Barack Obama.

There, we met with several current university students, as well as a graduate student (and a Yale graduate) Matt Talvachia, and Georgetown Club of Metropolitan Washington D.C. President Sean Redmond. Seated at the far end of the table, I became acquainted with current Georgetown student association officers Clara Gustafson, Vail Kohnert-Yount, Jake Sticka, and alumnus Alex Bodaken. They discussed several aspects of Georgetown, including student life, available majors, interesting classes, and internships.

After speaking with the group, I came to respect Georgetown much more and am now even considering applying. The proximity to Washington D.C., as well as the emphasis on government and liberal arts piqued my curiosity. I am not entirely sure whether I want to apply here or not just yet, but at least it has given me another option to consider as my senior year looms ahead.
Bidding our farewells, we went home, a bit tired in the taxi cab. On our way to the hotel, he asked about our background and what we were doing this summer. He offered a few words of wisdom, making it clear that we were here to take advantage of a rare opportunity, and despite the expense and work, it was meant to mold us. Here, I learned that the taxi cab drivers are some of the most insightful people in the world, and to always take the advice of a cabbie to heart.

Sitting at the hotel, looking back at today, it was nice to be back in Washington, D.C., even if it was only for a few days. Tomorrow, we are traveling to Philadelphia to see the University of Pennsylvania and the next leg of our trip. I hope it is even better than our experiences here in Washington.

Oh, speaking of dignitaries, it turns out that up the flight of steps, the Prime Minister of Haiti was having dinner too! It's so surreal to think that such powerful people are and have been within a few feet of where we were eating.

Well then, until tomorrow to the University of Pennsylvania!


  1. Jobel,

    The secret to success in this world is knowing where to go to get the answers to the questions we all have. Doormen, taxi drivers and ILC administrators--we'll never let you down.

  2. Glad you're thinking about applying to Georgetown, Jobel! If you have any more questions about the school, please don't hesitate to email me at avk26@georgetown.edu. Enjoy the rest of your trip!
    - Vail