The Last Week

The Last Week



Well, all good things must come to an end, including this blog and my summer in D.C.


2016 Presidential Elections

So the week before last I attended a really super cool event...and I completely forgot to include it in my last blog post. I went to a Q&A session with Bernie Sanders! It is not easy to get tickets for events like these, so I was really excited to attend. The broadcasting studio at the Newseum was full of mostly college-aged young adults, like me, all eager to hear from a presidential candidate. It was incredibly informative and made me more certain of who I will vote for in 2016.


Bernie Sanders


Wrapping up

This was my last week at my internship, so I had to finish all my projects. Luckily, I was nearly finished with all of them, including my report on European energy security. I got to say goodbye to all my co-workers and my supervisor, who assured me I’d come back to D.C. one day. I think he had a point; I can see myself going back to Washington, D.C. soon.


At The Washington Center, the end of the summer seems to be the most hectic. I turned in my final for my academic course and went straight into finishing my Portfolio, a collection of my reflections and proof of my professional growth during my time in D.C. It ended up being 77 pages long! It’s quite impressive to see how much work I've done this summer!


Friday was TWC Commencement, where I got to see all the other TWC students together one last time. When I looked through the crowd this time, I could name some of them and most were familiar faces. It's a huge contrast to my first day, where I only knew one person and recognized a handful of people from my school at The Washington Center. Kristen, a student from Florida International University (my school), gave a lovely speech on the importance of the work we did in Washington and our potential to continue doing work that inspires change. Commencement was a good culmination to my summer.


At TWC Commencement

I finished packing on Friday night and got to spend some quality time with my roommates for our last night together in our apartment. I know it's hardly the last time we’ll see each other; L and I go to school together, as do E and G, and we all live in Florida. We’ll be reunited one day!


Saturday morning was hectic, to say the least. There was last-minute packing, rushing to the Central Union Mission to donate linens, cleaning, and goodbyes. G and I had the same flights home, where we got to sit in the pilots’ cabin!


G and I in the pilots' cabin


Reflections and thoughts

If I could sum up my summer at The Washington Center in a few words, it is: transformative, hard, but fun. I was so nervous at the beginning of the program because I felt a bit out of place and like I wasn't knowledgeable enough of foreign affairs or American politics to be working in a city that revolves around these very things. But I was pleasantly surprised to see how much I do and to have put it into practice. What is even better is how much I have learned about international affairs, government, American politics, diplomacy, and myself. After 10 weeks, I feel more affirmed in my choice of study and in my abilities and knowledge. I've developed more concrete goals and a path to achieve them. I've made valuable connections that have taught me a lot about building my career and making the most out of what I know and what I can do.


Personally, my summer at The Washington Center has given me the opportunity to make great friends and explore a new city. Washington, D.C. is an amazing city where you can always find something new to learn and interesting people from all over the world. I really enjoyed the city; so much so that I'm seriously considered returning for graduate school and work.


To students considering this program: In all honesty, this program is not for those adverse to hard work, long nights, challenges, deadlines, or responsibilities. There will be days where it seems that your work is endless between your internship, your academic course, LEAD, and Professional Track, but the sense of satisfaction and pride you’ll get from finishing your list of responsibilities is immense. You will make mistakes, fix them, and learn from them. You will make new friends and new memories, as well as explore a fascinating city and yourself. Many of you might doubt your career aspirations; others might only be more affirmed of them, like me. But it’s a fantastic experience.


To E, G, and L: thank you for being such great roommates, but most importantly, for being wonderful, good people and friends. You girls have made my summer incredible and filled with laughter and memories. Love you all!


Thanks for keeping up with me and what I did this summer. I enjoyed being able to share my experiences in Washington, D.C. with you!

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