A cross-country journey to the International Law Institute

A woman poses with a dog with the U.S. Capitol in the background

After driving 2,000 miles cross country from the public markets of Seattle, to the peak of the Sears Tower in the windy city, Washington D.C. has been unparalleled in its ability to continually inspire young people like myself. Throughout these last 10 weeks, I have been welcomed into a dizzying array of opportunities, excitement, lifetime experiences, and a sense of community. This is an inter-state, international, inter-American hub where no matter the place you come from, you feel immersed in the essence of the United States as a melting pot of culture, ideas, and people.

For the last ten weeks, I have interacted with foreign diplomats, lobbyists, the Kenyan Senate, and students from all over the University of California system. These experiences have led me to establish the roots of a new network of diverse individuals from all walks of life and from all over the world. My internship at the International Law Institute has allowed me to sit in on training sessions concerning international law, international economics, and other aspects of international relations. Some of our guests have included diplomats from Nigeria as well as members of the Kenyan senate including Speaker of the Senate Kenneth M. Lusaka. I have also had the chance to immerse myself in marketing tasks such as securing new contacts for the ILI, designing the 2021 cover page for the Post 9/11: Twenty Years of Multilateral Counter-Terrorism Cooperation virtual seminar, and lastly, but most importantly, making connections with the amazing staff who have taken on the role of mentors and motivators guiding me through my personal endeavors. 

I am left speechless with the amount of life and energy reverberating throughout the alleyways and streets of this bustling district. Ten weeks has not been enough time to explore every museum, monument, event, concert, or holiday. After my time here, I could not imagine myself feeling more at home than I do here. I have fallen in love with the beautiful and fresh dynamic of this place and could see myself living here indefinitely.