Where Worlds Collide

Having learned, lived and loved working in Brussels, Belgium, I have to admit that I am completely bias towards the moules-frites, cobblestones and chocolate of the EU capital city. It is full of languages, opportunities and a vast network of international relations. However, now a DC resident, I have finally found a city to rival the political science paradise that is Brussels.

There is no better place in the world for international relations, politics, government and networking than D.C. Hands down. With dozens upon dozens of embassies lining the streets of our nation’s capitol, it is no surprise that it leads to a wealth of cultural convergence.

As a result, it has been easy, if not overwhelming, to find a myriad lectures, speakers, and events related to my school, readings and work. Just a few weeks ago, I was able to attend a panel entitled “Zimbabwe in Transition: What About the Local Level?” hosted by RTI International at the National Press Club. Not only was there a clear development perspective from the US, but there were also Parliamentarians direct from Zimbabwe who came to speak from personal experiences and cultural disparities.

Tomorrow, I plan to attend another speaker series entitled “African Governance in the Post-Independence Era” as hosted by Johns Hopkins. Not only am I thoroughly interested in all-things-Africa, but it also directly relates to the work I do both inside and out of the classroom. Ultimately, there is no substitute for hearing a story of independence directly  from someone who has lived through the troubled times preceding it. So far, I have been lucky enough to attend many events related to Africa and African issues; I just hope they continue to be scheduled on different dates and times so I can continue to do so!