Our day started with an information session held at UPenn. The session was very informative on how UPenn is once accepted and they touched on a few majors during the student lead panel.
During the student ran session three of the five students wanted to go onto Law school, which is not my field of intended study. One student, Jack, had stated early on that he was interested in more of a robotics field which caught my attention real quick. He briefly spoke about how we can go between the four areas which allows students to try classes that are interesting to them.
During the information session we also spoke with Maria Gaston who works with admissions. I did find out that the college classes we take at Middle College would not transfer; they would rather count as an extra step up during the application process. And if accepted into UPenn I would be placed in higher classes than the rest of the incoming freshman class.
Next we headed out to the UPenn Bookstore. When we arrived our main goal was to find something for the birthday girl, Amelia. After picking out a few items for her we went on the hunt for our own souvenirs. Most of the girls found an item that they like; I on the other hand could not. In the end (after walking around the store about ten times) I picked out a simple key chain.
After a quick lunch we headed out for the Eastern State Penitentiary. Which I then fell in love with. We arrived after the last tour of the day so we all set out with our own audio tour.
After we finished the audio tour I realized that even though we had missed the actual tour, we could still participate in little hands on tours. We participated in two of these mini tours the Punishment Cells and the Chaplain’s Office Murals. These tours were both lead by Lateef, who made the experience so fun and educational.
The Punishment Cell’s took us under the penitentiary. We saw how inmates where kept even if there
infractions were minor. Lateef informed us that they found documents from
this day long ago stating that they took two prisoners down for not wanting to exercise
and making a comment that a guard took offense too.
|My new friend Lateef!|
Our next stop was the Chaplain’s Office. When we first stepped into the office we saw 23 beautiful murals lining the walls and ranged in size. These murals were painted by a former inmate named Lester Smith who painted all 23 with in seven months. When Smith Painted them he did not want to take credit so he signed them under “Paul Martin” in reference to his two favorite saints. It wasn’t until about 2004, a year after Smith’s death, that his children discovered that the paintings were his.
While in the Chaplain’s Office, Lateef made sure to share that the office was his favorite place in the prison. He explained to us how he found it amazing that the inmates who at the time where kept under 24 hour isolation where allotted time to come and give prayers to whomever they worshiped.
From the Penitentiary we headed back to the hotel. A few minutes after everyone had gone to their respected room we received a text from Kendra stating that we had to push our afternoon plans back due to an incident. It had turned out that while we were out and about a water leak caused plaster to fall from the sealing in her room. This caused her suitcase filled of clothes to be soaked with water and the top items to also be covered with chunks of the sealing. After having a chat with the hotel they moved her to a different room and are addressing any damages caused during the leak.
After that we headed out to the One Liberty Observation Deck. When we arrive we had just enough time to catch the last elevator up. When we arrived to the 57 floor we stepped out and were immediately welcomed by Ben Franklin’s head. And we spent the rest of the time looking at the beautiful city at night.
After dinner we headed back to the hotel grateful to find no new leaks had made their way around.
During this day I took so many pictures that I wanted to share with everyone back home. But while uploading them I found that more than half had disappeared during the remaining process. And after searching through every file and the recycle bin then could not be found.
One more shout out to Amelia back home: HAPPY BIRTHDAY <3!