Friday, July 21, 2017

Eastern State is the new Penn(inteniary)

Today I woke up at around five in the morning from Don's incoming messages to our group chat. As I read through them, my sleepiness wore off and I decided it was time to get ready. It took me less than an hour to finish, so I had a couple of hours to spare. I decided to try working on my summer assignment while I waited for my roommate, Esmeralda, to wake up and get ready as well.

Our cohort met up at 8 AM, we all headed down to the bakery to eat breakfast. I decided to order pancakes, bacon, and a cappuccino. I liked how fluffy the pancakes tasted, and the cappuccino was able to snap me out of my sleepy state.

The  auditorium's balcony was absolutely gorgeous.
We got to the UPenn college hall fairly quickly after eating breakfast. Instead of going through the site tour we were promised months ago, we were led into an informational panel in the auditorium. This is because the site tour was cancelled due to the heatwave several days prior. 

As we entered the building, I was surprised to see how large and beautiful the interior was. In front of us, there was a large screen projector and a panel for five people to sit in. The auditorium wasn't as filled as I expected it to be, which made it easy for us to take our seats in the front of the stage.

The first segment of the presentation was dedicated to an introduction of the University of Pennsylvania. The introductory speaker, Maria Gaston, gave us an overview of what UPenn is like. Many students that attend UPenn have access to the four different undergraduate schools, faculty, and facilities the university provides. Unlike other Ivy League schools, UPenn valued itself for being able to unite students from different backgrounds and majors, they even recognized themselves as the most social Ivy League school.

The student panel talked about the courses that were provided at UPenn, and how their experiences have shaped the way they achieve success. They also shared several stories about themselves and the people around them that attend UPenn. Three out of the five students majored in political science, one studied nursing, and the other was focused in the field of engineering. 

When this session ended, we headed out to buy souvenirs from the UPenn bookstore. I only bought an embroidered hat, since I was saving the rest of my money for items I could purchase at Brown. We also bought several souvenirs for Amelia before we left as well, but it'll remain a surprise for her, of course.

After eating lunch, we traveled to the Eastern State Penitentiary, which was the first state prison within America. It opened 170 years ago, its goal was to reform criminals and make them think about their unlawful deeds. Their treatment was the worst America had ever experienced, and it held some of the most notorious criminals in history.
The balcony that looked throughout the prison halls.
Most of the halls were closed for touring,.
During our tour there, there were some places that struck out to me the most because of how the cells reflected the inmate's mind and personality. For a few of the cells, some inmates made art that was displayed within their cell walls. Most of the art forms were very unique drawings, paintings, and sculptures.
One of the art exhibits had an inmate that collected dead species .
Near the end of tour, there was a building that displayed all of the modern statistics for prisons in America. I was shocked to hear that nearly one third of the citizens are behind bars, and are not able to have a lasting career future because of it. 

When we returned to the hotel, we were relieved to be back in a building full of air conditioning. But this relief didn't last very long. We soon found out that Kendra's luggage had been soaked in water due to a leak from the ceiling. Each of us lent a hand in helping her move her luggage to a new hotel room located on the 18th floor.

The last tour we went to was the One Liberty Observation Deck, we were lucky to board the last elevator ride up to the top of the tower and spend a lovely 15 minutes or less with the company of Benjamin Franklin's head. 

In order to lighten our spirits after a long day, we decided to fill ourselves with some Italian food for dinner before returning to our hotels for the night to blog. I felt really bloated after eating my meal, but at least I knew I was satisfied. 

And in dedication for today, I'd like to say happy birthday to Amelia! I hope she's having a wonderful birthday back in California, because she definitely deserves it.

No comments:

Post a Comment