No Longer a Tourist!

The first week in Washington, D.C. has been quite a unique experience. Although I have previously visited Washington, D.C. I haven’t had the opportunity to explore the city as much as we have as Capital Scholars during our first week here. The city is fast paced and everyone is always on the go but there’s a wonderful energy in the air. I really enjoyed visiting the Kennedy Center, the Supreme Court and the Library of Congress. The Kennedy Center was beautiful and was a great representation of President Kennedy’s love for the arts. The chandeliers and marble walls gave the impression of being in a modern-day palace. Being able to see the Symphony practice for a minute definitely made me want to return for a show. The Supreme Court was another magnificent place to visit. The architecture of the Supreme Court was breathtaking and walking through the building reminded me of the history and meaning behind those walls. As we walked down the Supreme Court steps, it was a reminder of all the possibilities and opportunities that lie before us. Although the tours of the Kennedy Center and the Supreme Court were wonderful, my absolute favorite was the Library of Congress. Being able to see Jefferson’s library was amazing, especially because I myself am a book worm and can appreciate the beauty in all the knowledge that lies on those bookshelves.

Each of the staff members who spoke to us about their careers and how they got there, were very interesting and informative. I appreciated their honesty and openness about their jobs and the current environment in Washington, D.C. Everyone seemed busy but it was nice to know that they took time out of their hectic schedule to talk to us. Our last trip on Friday to Annapolis was also an unforgettable experience. The Paca house is beautiful and if my family lived on the East Coast I would certainly want to hold my wedding on the grounds of the home. Walking through Annapolis was relaxing and I enjoyed seeing the historical homes and the area. The Naval Academy was a bit of a flashback to my time in the Navy. Of course, the Naval Academy’s accommodations were certainly nicer than what I experienced in boot camp but that is to be expected. The history of all the sites truly made for a wonderful experience during our first week and it will not be easily forgotten.

This summer I look forward to further exploring Washington, D.C. I would like to see a show at the Kennedy Center and experience different activities that the locals enjoy. I’m a big music fan and I love being outdoors so I’ll be on the lookout for outdoor concerts and events. I also look forward to networking and meeting new people. Hearing their stories and experiences in Washington, D.C. and listening to any advice that they provide will be invaluable. Most importantly, I look forward to learning as much as I can from my internship site. I know that everything I learn will be a valuable tool that can be used in the pursuit of my Master’s degree as well as in my future career.

Over the past week I’ve learned important details about living and surviving in Washington, D.C. For instance, to not upset everyone around you it’s best to stand on the right side of the escalators so that people can walk and pass you on the left. I’ve learned how to better navigate my way around using the subway system and learned how to use Uber. (I’ve never used it before coming to D.C. but it’s extremely useful!) I’ve also learned that it’s important to communicate and network with people, especially those with whom you share interests with. Most people are willing to offer advice or help anyway they can and building relationships is essential in Washington, D.C. and can impact your future. Another thing that I learned is that there are many things to do and see in Washington, D.C. that are free so I don’t have to go broke while experiencing all that the city has to offer.


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