A Reflection On This Transformational Experience

A Reflection On This Transformational Experience

Washington D.C. is a city of change and The Washington Center plays an important role in this transformation by giving us the opportunity to expose ourselves to life changing experiences that would further develop our professional careers. Today I look back to an afternoon in September, as I sat in my room in Puerto Rico with the internship application and asking myself if I really wanted to do this. I’m certain I made the right decision!


As you have probably read from me a few times in the course of the semester, D.C. is a city where I’ve had to do a lot of things for the first time. It’s these moments that make me realize that I’m not the same that sat in the Blinken Auditorium overwhelmed by all the information provided on our first day in orientation.

 


For instance, this journey made me a better communicator. First, I was part of the Spring 2017 Blog Team that provided a platform in which I could share my first blog and my day to day experiences in the nation’s capital for future students to read.  Also, I was able to participate in the public speaking workshop, that together with the all-English environment made me a better speaker which is awesome.


Further, the efforts that The Washington Center invests towards civic engagement helped me understand the significance of giving back time and being part of the daily decision-making process. I was able to volunteer at the National Cherry Blossom Festival and I had the privilege of visiting US Senate gallery and learned that hands-on is the best way of provoking change.

 

 

My academic class of International Humanitarian Law with professor Max Hillaire made me realize how diverse and complicated the global neighborhood really is and how we can never run out of things to learn. I got the opportunity to debate, to ask, to say and most importantly to think and wonder how my island can be an active member of this international community.


One of the most significant treasures I take away is the elaborate network of people you get to meet here at The Washington Center. I got to meet amazing people from Mexico, Belgium, United States, Egypt, Peru, Nigeria, Canada, Haiti, India and South Korea, just to name a few, and all over the globe. It’s these people that became witnesses to our transformation and have contributed their ideas and planted in each of us a sense of adventure. Each coffee that we had, each movie night that we shared, made us build bridges of friendship and trust that ultimately last a lifetime.

 

International Organizations and Humanitarian Law Academic Course Group

Courtesy of Professor Max Hillaire, 2017.

 

Finally, I’ve seen people find job opportunities, new career paths and yes! Even love. But most importantly we’ve been able to find ourselves. I would like to thank all the people that make up The Washington Center community, for being able to provide life-changing experiences. Not to forget my friends and family who stayed behind, patiently waiting to see what I would find in this voyage. Especially to you that did not have to wait for me, but still did. We proved that distance makes the heart grow fonder. #WaitForMeToComeHome <3.


Now I see myself as a more confident independent professional and as I reflect on this long journey, I look closely to the small details that sometimes go unnoticed. This can be watching reality TV with your roommates, to the concierge saying good morning every day as you left the building. By being grateful for the little things, I’ve learned to appreciate the big ones.

 

White House North Lawn


If you’re reading this, and are considering this amazing adventure, I hope you find inspiration through my writing and decide to apply. You will not regret a second of it! If you ask me, Washington D.C. is a place of change and we are the people that embody it. The semester flew by and left before I could realize it did. Now all that remains in me is a different person and what could possibly be any better.


Thank You D.C.,
Daniel


Read Daniel's previous blog posts

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