This isn’t my first time in Washington, D.C., or even George Mason for that matter. But these first two days here have been unlike any experience I have ever had. I am finally in an environment where everyone has the same interests and goals. And getting to talk to adults and college students going in the same career path I want to pursue is awesome.
The first day I immediately met friends and we went through the whole twenty questions game; name, where you are from, and what color group are you in. Once I made friends who I felt were similar to me we walked around campus and made a group chat and were able to talk although not in the same dorm. My roommate though, is from the complete opposite end of the country and totally awesome. We then met with our color groups and I loved our JFA Savannah, who goes to GMU herself as a journalism major. We then had a formal dinner together where Tina Rosenburg spoke. She was excellent and explained to us how we can improve journalism of a future generation using Solution journalism. After dinner and the speech, the color groups met again to play more ice breakers and talk about Tina. We all go along super quickly and I went to bed knowing I wanted to do it again tomorrow.
Today we got up early for breakfast, then quickly got ready because today we got to talk to Hoda Kotb!! Her speech was awesome because also professional, she was very casual and easy to relate to and gave great points. One of my favorite stories she mentioned was once on an airplane she was trying to go to sleep when the man next to her kept bugging her and asking her questions. The fact that she had cancer came up, a touchy subject for her, and he told her that instead of trying to hide the fact you had it, use your experience to help others. “Don’t hog your journey”. I thought that was very moving.
Then after Hoda and lunch, we went to the Newsuem which was an experience within itself. My favorite exhibit was the Pulitzer photojournalists winners. The way a picture can create a story just amazed and the pictures themselves were phenomenal. Low-key made me want to become a photojournalist lol. But because we spend every waking moment with our color groups, I became close with them even more and especially close to Veronica. She’s my age and lives in Jersey like me. I am actually typing this right next to her as she types her own! Tomorrow we meet Brian Lamb and I am kind of nervous since he works with my uncle and my uncle told him I was here. He will definitely call me out. Pray I don’t screw up.