Tag Archives: Summer

Back to Lex

30 Aug

I’m finally back in Lexington and moved into my off-campus house! It’s such an exciting time to reunite with all of my friends and catch up after the summer. I spent my summer in London interning for a broadcaster at the Olympics. I don’t think I could have asked for a better opportunity, and the Johnson Opportunity Grant helped make it possible. This experience is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I definitely recommend applying for a Johnson Grant if you have a summer project that will contribute to your time and student leadership at W&L.

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A Celebration

28 Jun

I know it’s the summer, but I just thought I’d check in! This summer I am a Bonner fellow who has been placed at the at L’Arche as the Community Advocacy Fellow this summer. My placement is intended to support L’Arche’s mission to advocate for people who have intellectual disabilities and to confront structures that prevent people from engaging in society free from discrimination. What I have found that I really admire in L’Arche is their advocacy efforts are focused on the intellectually disabled population as a whole, but also largely focused on the needs and experiences of the members of their own homes. I spent my first week familiarizing myself with L’Arche and DC in general and then began to work on researching and drafting a memorandum addressing a number of questions surrounding the advocacy issue of post-mortem discrimination concerning people with intellectual disabilities. However, L’Arche has encouraged me to spend time outside of the office and really become integrated into the L’Arche community – last night I was given the opportunity to do so.

Every Tuesday evening, L’Arche hosts a celebration and prayer night for the two group homes in the Columbia Heights area. Euclid House and Ontario House gathered together with Bethlehem House, a community similar to L’Arche, to have dinner, celebrate their time together, and reflect through prayer. The theme of the night was gratitude and the experience was absolutely wonderful. I’m learning so much from the energy and love L’Arche has for its communities and am already looking forward to next Tuesday evening.

Birthright Israel

18 Oct

This past summer I spent ten days visiting Israel through Birthright Israel, a non-profit organization that sends Jewish students to Israel. As travel prices have increased, the competition to get a spot on a Birthright trip has increased as well. Fortunately, Washington and Lee’s Hillel, the Jewish Student Organization, has been designated Small but Mighty by Hillel International. With that distinction comes guaranteed spots on Birthright trips.

Out of the forty students on my trip to Israel, I was the only one from W&L, which provided a great opportunity to meet students from across the country. Israeli soldiers joined us for five of the ten days, so we were able to meet and become friends with our peers in the country. It was a whirlwind of a trip that took us across the entire country. Some of the highlights were swimming in the Dead Sea, wading through the Jordan River, riding a camel, visiting the Western Wall in Jerusalem, and shopping in Tel Aviv. At the end of the ten days, it felt as if I had been in Israel for months, and I didn’t want to leave. It was a wonderful experience, and I credit Hillel at W&L for allowing me to go.

 

High numbers

26 Jul

The above title refers to two “high numbers” that have been affecting the Admissions Office recently: extremely high temperatures, and a record number of prospective families visiting us as a result of Virginia Private College Week. The excruciating temperature was at its worst at the end of last week, reaching a heat index of close to 120 degrees…which inevitably spells heartache and misery for us summer tour guides. However, with a bottle of water in hand and a shrewd knowledge of the most accessible air-conditioned spots on campus, we persevered, and hopefully our enthusiasm about W&L cut through the heat and made its way to the ears of our tour-ees.

While the temperature has dropped to at least the double digits for this week, another number has suddenly spiked: that of prospective students taking advantage of Virginia Private College Week to come and visit us here in the Admissions Office. On Monday, I gave my biggest tour of the summer–close to 15 families, and that was after they had been divided between the two of us! Hopefully these families are enjoying their weeks traipsing around the beautiful land of Virginia and exploring the educational opportunities its private colleges have to offer.

Ice Cream Socials

30 Jun

Ice cream socials are just another part of the summer fun here in Lexington. It is held every week just outside the Co-op, where a different department will sponsor the ice cream social. Each week there are new and different flavors for students, faculty and guests visiting W&L to try out every Friday afternoon.

This past week, the Reeves Center sponsored the ice cream social, and those who stayed around to talk with the members of the museum department learned that a full-length portrait of George Washington as first President was coming back to our library. This painting, known as the “Lansdowne portrait,” is one of several copies after the original by Gilbert Stuart. The portrait owned by W&L was completed in the late 18th Century for an admirer of Washington, an Indian named Rom Du Lay Dey. The portrait hung in India for over 150 years until 1980, when an alumni of W&L purchased the painting. Jack Warner, class of 1940, bought the portrait to donate to W&L. Recently, the portrait was on loan to Westervelt Warner Museum in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, but is now back on its way to our library. It will hang above the open stairwell by the main entrance by the end of next week.

Just starting my chocolate raspberry ice cream, I learned so much about just one of the projects the Reeves Center was taking on this summer. I am definitely not a huge art person, but I loved hearing about “Lansdowne portrait” and the other interesting things the Reeves Center was taking on this summer. I was also somehwat glad to hear that the huge empty space above the stairs was going to be filled with such a historic piece of art.

George Washington (Lansdowne portrait) by Gilbert Stuart, oil on canvas, 1796

Portrait of George Washington painted by Gilbert Stuart

A Summer Stay in Lex Vegas

29 Jun

The city of Lexington still buzzes with excitement even after many of the students have left town for the summer to embark on adventures in internships, visiting family, and fun in the sun. A handful of my peers are still hanging out in front of the Colonnade during their lunch breaks and in the evening, having stayed on campus for the summer to work or do research with professors. It’s calm, but students and faculty alike get together to go to outdoor concerts in town, the quaint drive-in movie theater down the road, and (most importantly) the summer ice-cream socials every Friday at the Commons.

During the year, I am so focused on my classes, friends, and living in the dorms that I almost forget that another world exists outside of our beautiful campus. This summer has given me the chance to explore the (extremely large number of) historical sites in the area, check out the local attractions, and enjoy the local cuisine in lieu of my usual meals at D-hall. Without a doubt, a summer in Lex Vegas is a kind of paradise in itself.

Spirit Continues

13 Feb

My boss and a few other interns were traveling around holding the campaign that I had the good fortune of starting during my time in Peru. The campaign is meant to start a youth movement against domestic violence.