One Month in DC:Spring 2016

ASP Spring 2016 has been here just over a month! Here are a few things they have learned in D.C. so far.

I’ve learned “relationship building skills, more about myself, how to plan meals for the week and score free meals!” –Courtney, Taylor University

“Strangers are only friends waiting to be made.” –Sarah, Northwestern College (Iowa)


“I learned the importance of having confidence in myself, my unique experiences, skills, and abilities.  If you don’t cheer for yourself, who will?” –Adela, Messiah College

I’ve learned “how to be involved in community.”


“Public transportation isn’t as complicated as it seems — getting groceries, however, is.” –Rachel, Malone University

“I’ve learned to seek the Lord in times of change.” –Patrick, Taylor University

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“I may not be a politician, but I have power as a pedestrian.  I will exercise my power!” –Janet, Fresno Pacific University

I’ve learned “how to be confident in overwhelming situations; how to grocery shop; the value of having coffee with someone and hearing about their experiences.” –Cara, Olivet Nazarene University


I’ve learned “how to navigate the metro bus system.” –Sarah, Southeastern University

“Networking is important. You need to be confident and approach people, but you also need to be approachable, as well.” –Hannah, Vanguard University


“No story is too small to share.  No experience is too small to live.  No pizza is too big to eat.” –Ashley, Dordt College

“The right side of the escalator is for tourists, the left side for locals and commuters.” –Stephen, Northwestern College (Iowa)


First Two Weeks in DC:Spring 2016

ASP Spring 2016’s first two weeks in D.C. have been filled with making friends, getting to know the city, and dealing with snow! Scroll through some snapshots from the semester’s orientation.


Getting to know each other through Three Things

Bus Day 1

Exploring the neighborhood during Bus Day 1: Courtney Selle, Taylor University; Mckayla Henderson, Biola University; Rachel Parnell, Malone University; and Farnel Maxime, Gordon College


Apartment 9 ladies: Adela Antal, Messiah College; Hannah Scheenstra, Vanguard University of Southern California; Sarah Ooi, Messiah College; and Sarah Copeland, Southeastern University


Adela Antal (Messiah College) reads with a local elementary school student at Little Lights Urban Ministries {Photo credit: Little Lights}


Rachel Taylor (Messiah College) helps a local elementary school student with her homework at Little Lights Urban Ministries. {Photo credit: Little Lights}


Attending a Washington Wizards NBA game: Farnel Maxime, Gordon College; Mckayla Henderson, Biola University; Veronica Ibarra, Biola University; and Rachel Taylor, Messiah College


We got snow! Thanks to our dedicated students for helping to shovel out our offices and the Dellenback Center: Farnel Maxime, Gordon College; Sarah Ooi, Messiah College; Cara Champlin, Olivet Nazarene University; Adela Antal, Messiah College; and Sarah Wedel, Northwestern College.


All dressed up for the CCCU 40th Anniversary Gala!


ASP-Gordon College student Farnel Maxime with his president, Dr. Michael Lindsay, at the CCCU 40th Anniversary Gala

This morning, students are off to the first day of their internships.  Check back for updates on what they learn at work!

Orientation Week: Fall 2014

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The Fall 2014 semester is off to a great start! Students from Biola University, Bob Jones University, Emmanuel College, Gordon College, Malone University, Messiah College, Mount Vernon Nazarene University, Olivet Nazarene University, Oral Roberts University, Palm Beach Atlantic University, Point Loma Nazarene University, Seattle Pacific University, Warner Pacific College, and Whitworth University arrived August 28th–and have stayed busy ever since! From orientation to neighborhood engagement to classes to monument walking tours to community events to scavenger hunts, ASP students and their WJC classmates have been getting to know their new community in exciting ways.

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A Bus Day group presents their excursion to the rest of the class.

Kaitlyn Stump’s Bus Day group presents their excursion to the rest of the class.

The first weekend of the semester included a group scavenger hunt or “Bus Day,” giving the opportunity to explore different parts of the city.

Suzanna Bregar of Malone University said that the scavenger hunt was her favorite part of the semester so far.  “I liked that we were broken up into small groups.  It was easier to get to know people.  I also liked exploring the city, missing the bus, or waiting forever for a different bus!”

“My favorite part was the Marine Barracks parade, particularly the silent platoon,” said Kaitlyn Stump also from Malone University.  “Their discipline was extraordinary; they were so in sync without any verbal commands.”

S'mores night on the back patio [From left, Shaefer Bagwell {Biola University}, Collin Callhan {Biola University}, Trenton Pouncy {Oral Roberts University}, Chris Rednour {Mount Vernon Nazarene University}, and Justin Botejue {Whitworth University}]

S’mores night on the back patio [From left, Shaefer Bagwell {Biola University}, Collin Callahan {Biola University}, Trenton Pouncy {Oral Roberts University}, Chris Rednour {Mount Vernon Nazarene University}, and Justin Botejue {Whitworth University}]

Monument walking tour with RD James Kim

Monument walking tour with RD James Kim

Becoming part of the monument at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial

Becoming part of the monument at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial


Apartment 5 organized a potluck brunch for the rest of the Dellenback!

Later this evening, ASP is attending a Nationals baseball game at Nats park.  Alexander Hayes of Warner Pacific University comments, “If you don’t have fun here, you won’t have anywhere else!”

Internship Spotlight: Analise Nuxoll & Emily Davisson

Emily Davisson (Olivet Nazarene University) and Analise Nuxoll (Westmont College) had the unique experience of interning alongside each other at the Center for Public Justice last semester.  Below, they share about what their time together at CPJ was like.  Though most students do not intern with a fellow student from ASP, all of them will be able to identify with Emily and Analise’s overall internship story from learning to commute and figuring out professional dress codes to gaining unexpected skills and having a life-shaping experience!

Emily_Analise 2Analise: Starting off at the Center for Public Justice was…nerve wracking to say the least. I was so glad to know that Emily would be interning there with me, and together, we discussed what our time there might be like. The first day, we got off the bus approximately a mile early. Armed with high heels, pencil skirts, and lots of tissue (we were both incredibly sick), we got on another D6 bus and made our way to 1115 Massachusetts Ave.

Emily: For at least the first three days of my internship at CPJ, I couldn’t even talk because I was so sick! Stephanie, Katie, Peter, and Kendrick (CPJ staff) must have been worried about what they had gotten themselves into when they chose me. It was also a little awkward for the first few days because Lise and I didn’t know the expectation when it came to dress code. I think we were both highly overdressed, and probably took ourselves a little too seriously, in our suits and heels for the first week or two at CPJ. The staff and the two other interns quickly made us feel comfortable, especially Peter with his joking attitude and British accent.

Analise: I mostly worked with briefs and charitable solicitation forms during my time at CPJ. I did a lot of research regarding the IRS tax code in relation to non profits, and even spent some afternoons trying to get clarification from different IRS employees. Throughout this experience, I was able to have a better grasp on what sort of law I would like to practice in the future.

Emily: Soon after starting at CPJ, I realized that I had essentially taken on a communications/journalism internship. This made me a little bit nervous because my current college training didn’t help me with any of that; my major is political science with a minor in nonprofit management. I learned a lot about CPJ’s content and materials from years past; however, I mostly worked with their online journal for young adults, Shared Justice, and how to manage that website, edit daily articles, and promote its content via social media. I came to really appreciate the values Shared Justice stands for, including faithful Christian engagement in politics. As it turns out, I ended up working as the assistant editor of Shared Justice for the summer, where I manage all the current and potential contributor communication, the daily article schedule, and the social media for Shared Justice and Capital Commentary, which is very similar to Shared Justice, except it’s for people more established in their careers (35+).

We also had staff meetings every Wednesday. This was an integral part of our CPJ experience because it was during this time we got the chance to get to know other staff members and interns. We read the book Pluralism and Freedom, and had the chance to meet the author, Stephen Monsma. Weekly meetings were also a time where we shared prayer requests and praises for the things God had done in our lives. We both appreciated working for an organization that centered around the work of bringing God’s Kingdom to earth.

Analise: Together, Emily and I braved late busses, icy sidewalks, and freezing temperatures. We ran most days to catch a bus home, and talked about everything from CPJ, ASP, home life, and politics every Tuesday through Thursday. We discussed what it meant to be a Christian in Washington, D.C. and how our political views and involvement in the community reflected our faith. The days we spent at CPJ, whether interesting, painful, or funny, were days we will never forget. I know the experiences we gained have helped shape us to take on our next step in our educational and professional lives.

{Left} Emily Davisson is a senior political science major, nonprofit minor at Olivet Nazarene University. {Right} Analise Nuxoll is a junior political science major at Westmont College.

{Left} Emily Davisson is a senior political science major, nonprofit minor at Olivet Nazarene University.
{Right} Analise Nuxoll is a junior political science major at Westmont College.

Guest Post: “Top 5 Questions I’ve Gotten Since My Return from DC” by Stephanie Grossoehme

For ASP students, life in DC is life-changing.  They navigate a city, take on adult responsibilities, grow professionally through their internships, mentorships, and track work, and ultimately discover a lot about themselves.  Adjusting to life after ASP is often harder than one might expect.  How do you answer the dreaded “So, how was it?” question? How do you explain your experience to other people when you’re still processing it yourself?

Fall 2013 alumna Stephanie Grossoehme blogs her way through some of these questions, and we are thrilled to feature a guest post (and pictures) from Stephanie as she reflects on her semester experience.

#5. Did you see Obama?

Yes, I did. I didn’t get very close. I saw him at the Mall at the 50th anniversary of MLK Jr’s Dream speech. More exciting than that was the woman who started to faint and fall back onto me. I didn’t even catch her, I just watched her fall. At first I thought she was just stepping back. Nope. She was falling. She ended up being okay though. Another time I saw President Obama was at the National Christmas Tree Lighting. It was cold and very rainy. So he didn’t hang out for very long.


Jefferson Memorial#4 So you’re done there, then?

Yes, for now. I don’t think anyone who ever goes to DC can ever fully escape it. And that’s not because Big Brother is watching you. But I’ll speak for myself and just say that I’d totally live there again. DC is a great place to thrive in and it’s one of my favorite places. I plan on applying for jobs there after I graduate.



#3. What exactly did you do in DC?

Does anyone ever really know? I didn’t work for the CIA. I had 16 credits of coursework and internship. I interned with an organization called Free the Slaves. They do anti-slave labor work in 6 countries. They’re awesome. I worked with a team on a global development project with World Vision. I was mentored by an amazing and funny communications professional. I took a course called Vocation and Leadership. It was heavily discussion based. It made me think deeper. We explored truth and justice and Shalom, and I liked it a lot. I still like to go back and reference my reading assignments and I’m not even a hardcore nerd. In addition to the coursework though, I got to explore the city and learn from the people who live there.


DC rowhouses#2. Ew. Why did you even go to DC?

This is my personal favorite. Washington has a bad rep. People don’t agree with the government, I get it. But let’s be honest. DC is a great place to live. It even has its own laws since it’s not a State. It’s clean. It’s friendly. People say good morning to you as you walk by. Like, people at my little college don’t even do that. The city is full of history, obviously. It’s amazing how you never tire of the architecture. DC has this thing for cupcakes. The city is brick-paved and lined with unique row houses. My point: don’t hate on DC until you’ve walked a mile of her. She’s a beauty that’ll take your breath away. (Sigh. Pardon me while I go write a love song).

#1. Are you glad to be back?

Meh. I love Chicago, for sure. But since my experiences in DC probably changed my life, it’s difficult to get back into previous things. That’s why I write here, silly. (Obviously the people asking me these questions should just go read my blog and save me from further social interaction and contribute to slowly digress the way we humans communicate non-verbally with one another ahhhh…jk). Anyways. I think it’s something of a culture shock. I like being home, but I’m in search of the balance in taking my newfound lessons and stories and living them in an old place. That’s epitome of the struggle. It’s a progress.

Stephanie in Old Town Alexandria

Stephanie in Old Town Alexandria

A rising senior, Stephanie is a Communication major at Olivet Nazarene University.  While an ASP student, she was the social media intern at Free the Slaves; since returning to ONU, she has continued to manage Free the Slaves’ social media remotely.  After graduation, Stephanie plans to pursue social media marketing (basically anything that involves traveling, tweeting, photographing, and planning) in a major city–hopefully DC! You can find her blogging at Steph Went to Washington as she has time.

Fall 2013 in Review: Community Life

We were blessed with two wonderful student event coordinators this semester.  Alexander Archuleta (a senior at Whitworth University) and Stephanie Grossoehme (a junior at Olivet Nazarene University) planned activities that wonderfully benefited the community life in the Dellenback Center.  These events included a progressive dinner in which the students moved to different apartments to eat each course of the meal, a Halloween party, and a Christmas party!


Shayla Wakumoto (Biola University), Kelley Griffin (DC programs administrator), Livy Workman (Waynesburg University), and Claire Sloan (Washington Journalism Center student from The Master’s College) at the progressive dinner.


Dessert for the progressive dinner was served on the rooftop deck!


Students took a creative approach and integrated their studies into the pumpkin-carving contest.


Stephanie and Alexander planned Paper Plate Awards as the last group activity of the semester. Stephanie and Alexander are pictured here with their awards!

Fall 2013 in Review: Global Development Enterprise

Last semester, GDE worked with World Vision to develop a strategy to market a training manual for very poor farmers.  This was a follow-up to a USAID-funded project in which Spring 2012 GDE students developed the manual on helping these farmers work together to bring their product to global markets.


ImageGDE students Brett Woods (Missouri Baptist University), Christopher McGee (Biola University), Shayla Wakumoto (Biola University), Devin Proctor (Gordon College), Stephanie Grossoehme (Olivet Nazarene University), and Dirk Oudman (Dordt College) outside World Vision’s DC headquarters


Fall 2013 in Review: A Trip to the Supreme Court

In November, ASP faculty and students met at 7am, ate some donuts, and headed down the street to hear oral arguments at the Supreme Court.Image

The U.S. Supreme Court on a crisp November morningImage

Students wait in line for tickets: [from left] Andrew Grotelueschen (Trinity International University), Stephanie Grossoehme (Olivet Nazarene University), Shayla Wakumoto (Biola University), and Olivia Workman (Waynesburg University).Image


Alexander Archuleta (Whitworth University), Connor Briggs (Gordon College), and Adam Saxton (University of Northwestern–St. Paul) leave the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court - Stephanie Grossoehme

Student Stephanie Grossoehme took this picture as we left the hall.