Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Lunchroom battles, blueberry mascarpone and relaxing

Students and counselors in front of the funhouse mirror at Thomas Sweet Ice Cream during a newspaper team meeting. (Photo Credit: Alexandria Sharpe, Brooklyn NY)

By Gohar Chichian (Queens, NY)

Though we have been here for only five days, this program has not fallen short of my expectations. The jam-packed schedules have been full of speeches by prestigious figures, writing workshops and interviews with University officials and local residents as we strive to find the perfect story. However, one of the things that has not ceased to amaze me is the atmosphere here at Princeton University.

As I walk around the campus, I am struck by how large the campus is and by the interesting variety of people here. All the students, teachers and counselors are very friendly, and every day several valuable lessons are learned and help me in becoming a better journalist.

Despite all the strenuous work here, there are many light moments throughout the days. Walking in the lunchroom has become an amusing battle of sorts -- today I had to put my pizza in a cereal bowl! Long lines await by the food and drinks, leading to a lack of utensils and an overabundance of eager and hungry people. The number of people here are impressive, and it is astounding what kind of programs Princeton has to offer. Overall, the program has a relaxed atmosphere, making everyone feel comfortable to shine and show who they truly are.

One of the highlights of the days spent here at Princeton are during the newspaper group meetings. I'm in the Wall Street Journal newspaper team and it is a chance to spend time with several counselors one on one along with other students in our group. It is also a chance to do one of our favorite things to do: eat. A common destination is the ice cream shop "The Bent Spoon", where I am becoming fond of the blueberry mascarpone and recommending it to everyone else. What I love most about Princeton is the ease with which everyone can talk to one another and this is supplemented by ice cream and games of “Truth, Truth, Lie.” Princeton’s atmosphere is amazing, and I look forward to experiencing many more moments like these in the next several days.

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