This past week I had an amazing opportunity to travel to Washington D.C. and spend five days there. The reason I had this opportunity goes back to my freshman year when I decided to join a club on campus called Silver Wings. Silver Wings is a national, co-ed organization that focuses on professional development and community service. The club’s members are both AFROTC cadets and civilians and one of our purposes is to create awareness throughout the community about the military. Over the past three years, I’ve been able to develop more as a leader because of the positions I’ve held in the organization. This year I’m the Silver Wings National Treasurer and the reason I went to Washington D.C. is because we had our Executive Boards. Executive Boards are when the National Staff shares with the eleven Region Presidents what the vision is for the year. Also, our sister organization-Arnold Air Society-meets and we discuss what community service projects we will work together on amongst other things.
My time in D.C. was not just spent in hotel meeting rooms; I did get to go out and see many of the monuments. I saw the Capitol Building, the Washington Monument, the White House, the Vietnam Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Jefferson Memorial. I had never been to Washington D.C. before and to see all these monuments was an amazing experience! Also, we did get to go to one museum-the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. We decided to get a group picture taken in front of the original Wright Flyer, since our school has a replica of the Wright Flyer in front of the library. One day I want to go back, so that I can spend more time exploring the city!
One of the reasons we have our Executive Board Meeting in Washington D.C. is because the Air Force Association invites us to their Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition. When we finished with our meetings each day, we were able to go downstairs in the hotel and attend their conference. Some of the briefings I was able to listen to were from the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of the Air Force, and many other notable people. On Sunday morning, we were guests at the Air Force Association Wreath Laying Ceremony for fallen Air Force Association members. The ceremony took place at the Air Force Memorial and I was impressed at the size and beauty of the memorial. Also, we were included in the two formal dinners they hosted. One of the dinners was to honor the 12 Outstanding Airmen and the Air Force Band along with the Singing Sergeants put on a performance. To be able to attend the Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition was an experience that I will remember for a long time.
The whole conference was a one of a kind opportunity and I’m so glad that I joined Silver Wings my freshman year. A big part of the college experience is joining organizations on campus and Embry-Riddle has something for everyone. I encourage you when looking at prospective schools to also look at the clubs they offer. My college experience without Silver Wings is one I wouldn’t dare to imagine!
Until next time,