Each week when I'm writing my blog post, I check another week off my calendar, but I should be clear that this is not a grueling experience where I am counting down the weeks, days or minutes. In fact it's quite the opposite. With each week, I am able to check off more accomplishments and "only-in-D.C." experiences. However, as each week goes by, I find myself with less and less time left here in D.C. and Maryland. The end date of my internship came up in a conversation with some co-workers recently and it hit me just how little time is really left, which left myself and my co-workers equally as disappointed as they expressed their sadness about my upcoming departure - but I must say this has to be as good of proof as any that I fit in well at my internship and have made strong connections with my colleagues. With so little time left, I once again spent this week exploring everything D.C. and TWC has to offer.



Friday was the second session of the Simpson-Mineta Leaders Series (SMLS), which focused on race relations in the United States. The panelists included Michael Eric Dyson, author and contributor for MSNBC and Ray Suarez, the host of Al Jazeera's Inside Story. The panelists touched on everything from the history of race relations in the United State to recent events that have taken place across the country, resulting in many thought-provoking moments. Being such an important, relevant topic in today's world, I found the panel to be both interesting and informative. Attendees also had the opportunity to ask question during a Q&A session, which allowed for a great dialogue between the audience and the panelists.


SMLS Panelists Dyson and Suarez

SMLS panelists Suarez (left) and Dyson (right).


Civic Engagement

Following the SMLS session, I attended a social engagement session called "Sustainable D.C.," which was a part of the civic engagement programming organized by TWC. Focusing on the District of Columbia's plan to make D.C. the healthiest, greenest and most livable city in the U.S., speaker Kate Johnson from the District Department of the Environment provided a closer look at the sustainability plan. From addressing climate change, health and wellness, job and economic opportunity, and equity, I found the plan to be comprehensive and engaging, especially after learning it has significant input from the local community and aims to have even more people implement the plan. While sustainability may not be the first issue that comes to mind when thinking of D.C., it is an important issue that everyone can take part in.


National Zoo

I was finally able to cross one of my top must-do-while-in-D.C. events off my list this weekend when I visited the National Zoo (NZ). Okay, so maybe I made this one up, but I wanted to make sure you were still paying attention. This was my first time visiting the zoo in D.C. and I really enjoyed my visit. For those who know me, you can be sure I went straight to the panda exhibit and spent quite a bit of time there, but I also enjoyed seeing all the other animals. With so many animals, it was difficult to get through the entire zoo in one day, so I will definitely have to return and I highly recommend it to other people. As an added bonus, the zoo is located near the Woodley Park neighborhood, which is full of good restaurants, so after exploring the zoo, a friend and I grabbed something to eat at a nearby cafe.


National Zoo Entrance

The National Zoo.


Panda at the National Zoo

Panda at the National Zoo.



- Kailyn

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