By Courtney Jasper
My go-to slogan during the two-week trip in Washington D.C. was “go dogs.” It started as an odd joke but, overtime the statement was tied to a sense of pride for my fellow Bulldogs and Drake University. This pride stemmed partially from the interesting group of students that I went to Washington D.C. with. Each of the students brought a unique perspective to the trip since all of us are from different hometowns, hold different political beliefs, and have different majors. Much of my newfound pride for being a Drake Bulldog came from meeting with Drake alumni while we were in Washington D.C.
One of the best parts of the trip to Washington D.C. was getting to meet the Drake in D.C. alumni network. Everyday after our morning sessions at the Washington Center we would visit different Drake University alumni. It was fascinating to see all of the different things that Drake alumni are doing in Washington D.C. because it can be difficult as a student to see people in the workforce being successful and think, “that’ll be me one day.” Getting to meet Drake alumni in D.C. who are in the top of their field was exciting for me because it forced me to broaden my horizons to the many different potential things that I could do with our many politics and communications degrees.
The Drake University D.C. alumni are an extremely successful group that seem to want to have a larger network of Drake University people in the city. At almost every site visit we went to the alum who was hosting us would offer assistance if we ever decided to move to Washington D.C. Prior to this trip to Washington D.C. I had never considered working outside of my home state. Meeting the Drake in D.C. alumni network taught me that I already have a support group in D.C. if I chose to move out there one day. After having met the Drake in D.C. network I have a new found pride in Drake University because of the incredible graduates in Washington D.C. who were willing to share their time, co-workers, and resources with us.
Our trip to Washington D.C. challenged my “five-year plan” and I am happy about that. I had thought that I knew what I would be doing for the rest of my life and where I would be living. Having a five year plan at age 21 is unrealistic and thinking I had my entire life planned out was silly. Instead I am going to learn from the alumni that I met and be willing to try anything in my near future. I understand that no job is beneath me. I am young and have the ability to be flexible and say “yes” to as many opportunities as possible. I am anxious to see what lies ahead of me and I am confident in knowing that the Drake University community will be there to help me on my journey, whatever it might be.