Pleasant Surprises

March 7, 2017

Being from California my entire life, moving to DC was something I eagerly looked forward to. There were many firsts I would encounter including moving to a city where I did not know anyone. Although I didn’t know what to expect, I have been pleasantly surprised everyday.

The month of February has been the most eventful. I had my 1st full week of work as an Intern at the US Department of State. A highlight from my first week of work was when I got to meet the new Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson! Unfortunately there are no pictures for proof. It also snowed the morning of my first day!

Being a part of UCDC, I have met different people with whom I can explore the city, discuss current political events, and attend UCDC events such as the Shear Madness showing at the Kennedy Center. It was a colorful and interactive show that asked the audience to solve a murder mystery (I recommend 10/10). During the past month, I also participated in the Alumni UCDC night, explored the Renwick museum and the Newseum, and attended various Monday Night Forums. There never seems to be enough time to explore all DC has to offer.  

For one of the classes I am taking, Supreme Court, there were two outdoor events that took place this past month. On one Saturday morning, we went to Arlington Cemetery with classmates to present on various past Justices of the Supreme Court. My partner Gary and I presented on Justice Douglas. One fun fact about Justice Douglas: he had four wives in his lifetime, two of whom he married were in their early twenties when he was in his late sixties!

The second event was to attend an oral argument at the United States Supreme Court. Fellow UCDC students and I waited in line for hours in cold windy weather. Unfortunately, we didn’t end up getting a seat for the entire session but did get a 5 minute sit in of the hearing. It was pretty amazing to see the Justices in real life and observe things we learned in the classroom.

One of my favorite memories from these past weeks was taking a night bike ride to the National Mall. My friend Amanda and I stopped to take a picture at the Lincoln memorial.

I look forward to the rest of my time here and already feel saddened that my time is coming to an end. Halfway through the program, I know I have made plenty of fond memories here in DC that will last a lifetime.

headshot of Julie No

Julie No is a graduating senior at UC Berkeley majoring in Cognitive Science. She was born and raised in Orange County, Southern California. Julie’s time at UC Berkeley allowed her to cultivate a passion to alleviate socioeconomic inequality including education inequality. Her coursework and work experience have inspired her to solve these problems using innovative thinking and empathy for people. Julie has always aspired to work in the public sector and believes Washington, DC to be the best place to address these systematic issues. During her semester at UCDC, Julie will be an intern at the Department of State, in the Office of the Secretary. She looks forward to meeting passionate people as well as experiencing a snowy winter.