Hilltop on the Hill in Washington

In fall 2009, 17 Journalism and Corporate Communications & Public Affairs students are studying in Washington, D.C., in October for the Hilltop on The Hill 2009 program.

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Day 2: From the U.S. Capitol to CNN

Photo%20on%202009-10-09%20at%2020.02.jpg An update from senior CCPA major Solomon:

Whew, what a whirlwind of activity today. It felt like we were in the midst of a twister, and we weren’t even in Kansas!

h-IMG_7416.JPG The first order of business in the morning was to catch the train for a short ride over to the U.S. Capitol building. There, we met with Dan Weiser, the Senior Web Editor for the U.S. House of Representatives. He gave us a brief overview of his duties and responsibilities before giving us an insider’s view of the White House press room. That was definitely interesting. We were able to even see the House of Representatives itself!

After our brief yet wonderful tour of the White House, it was on to a series of talks with a great number of people. We talked to members of the State Department about their policies regarding Africa. We went to the White House conference center, where we talked to the former deputy press secretary to the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Gannet Tseggai. We talked to Chief of Staff of the U.S. Department of Labor, Katherine Archuleta. But the highlight of our day came at the very end.

h-IMG_7595.JPG We were given special access to CNN. While at CNN we were able to view a live showing of Wolf Blitzer’s The Situation Room. That was amazing! We saw what happens during a live broadcast, including the unscheduled, unexpected events that happen more often than we know. While we were there, the guest on the show was nowhere to be found. They had to put John King, another anchor, in his place until they could find their guest. We were grateful for the access CNN granted us and for the insight we otherwise would not have had.

Tomorrow will be yet another whirlwind tour of D.C. with more to report on. We all can’t wait!

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