Hilltop on the Hill, 2013 Inauguration

Twenty-one communication studies and journalism students are in Washington, D.C., in January 2013 as part of the Meadows School of the Arts’ Hilltop on the Hill program. In addition to reporting on Inaugural events, the students will visit media and government sites, and meet with political communicators, journalists and SMU alumni. The trip is led by Rita Kirk, professor of communication studies; Daniel Schill, assistant professor of communication studies, and Carolyn Barta, journalism professor. Endowed by the Bauer Foundation, the Hilltop on the Hill program also takes students studying political communication to political party conventions and the G8 Economic Summit.

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Performers rock the Black Tie and Boots Ball

An update from Katelyn, a journalism and theatre double major who is blogging about Inauguration weekend on smudailycampus.com, where this post originally was published:

President Obama’s decision to scale back the number of official Inaugural balls this year to just two doesn’t seem to have influenced the state societies to making similar choices.

Two days before the public swearing-in, celebratory balls are in full swing throughout the DC area – one of the largest being Texas State Society’s Black Tie and Boots Ball. With an entertainment lineup of more than 30 artists and talent acts, the event drew attendees not only from the capital but also from the state itself.

Many Texas residents flew in for the festivities, showcasing their authentic cowboy boots beneath full-length gowns and tuxedos.

With five stages set up throughout four ballrooms, guests flooded the Gaylord Hotel and immediately took on the “state fair” – a plethora of vendors selling jewelry, barbecue, and of course presidential memorabilia. All were themed around the Southwest to represent the host state.

Inside the ballrooms were country artists including SMU Alum Jack Ingram and Asleep at the Wheel, as well as full buffets and spotlight performances by Texas student dancers – one line-dancing group from Lake Highlands was flown in, as well as the majorette dance line the Rangerettes.

Jamie Foxx showed his support at the inaugural festivities and even gave a shout-out to SMU.

Also follow student journalists on Twitter: #SMUinDC

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