The Department of Student Life, the Student Activities Board (SAB) and the Multicultural Advisory Committee (MAC) took Seton Hall students on a trip to Washington, D.C. on Feb. 15.
Students who went were dropped off at the National Mall, which includes the Smithsonian, the capitol building and much more.
The idea first came from SAB and MAC last spring. Alison Sotolongo, director of student activities, said the students who first came up with the idea graduated last year, so Sotolongo and her colleagues from the Department of Student Life organized it for the 2020 spring semester.
“The idea for this trip developed out of a conversation between SAB and MAC in Spring 2019 to plan a bus trip to museums,” Sotolongo said. “Daria Allen, Assistant Director for Leadership Development, Meghan Borowick, Assistant Director for Student Activities and I felt this would be a great experience for students and decided to organize the trip.”
Two types of tickets were sold for the event, both of which sold out. One was only for the bus down to Washington and the other was for the bus and a ticket to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Sotolongo said tickets for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture can be hard to get because of its popularity. Therefore, tickets for the museum were ordered in the fall semester but they were limited.
“Like most of the Smithsonian museums, its entrance is general admission, but due to its popularity, we wanted to secure tickets for Seton Hall students to experience the museum,” Sotolongo said. “We looked into securing group tickets at other museums, but not all of the museums offer group reservations.”
Students who took the trip were able to explore Washington however they wanted. Tro’vonta Burgess, a sophomore marketing and IT management major, shared his experience on the trip.
“From the trip this past weekend I was able to go and see the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History, Washington Monument, The White House, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial,” Burgess said. “As my first time going to Washington D.C. and being able to see so much history, it was amazing and so glad that the school offered such an experience.”
Gretchen Zink, a junior accounting major, said, “During the Washington D.C. trip, I had the opportunity to see the Museum of American History as well as the Holocaust Museum,” said Zink, “Those museums were very powerful to experience because they both showed how we got to where we are.”
She added, “Getting the opportunity to visit D.C. was an incredible experience where I got to learn about our nation’s capital and see up close and personal some of the incredible statues and monuments we have in this country.”
Meghan Borowick, assistant director of student activities, talked about the Washington trip and what she hopes students who attended got out of the experience. “The event was extremely successful as there was high demand from the campus community about it,” Borowick said. “We hope that all students were able to dive deep into the National Museum of African American History and Culture through stories, exhibitions and cultures.”
Sotolongo also discussed what she hoped students got out of the experience of going to Washington.
Sotolongo said, “We recognize that students come to Seton Hall from all over the country and the world, so we are always looking for new and exciting experiences to offer as part of our travel trips. Some students may have never experienced Washington, D.C. before and others may love visiting, so our hope is that the students who attend the trip get to engage, explore and enjoy time with their friends and peers.”
Genevieve Krupcheck can be reached at email@example.com.