36 Hours in Pittsburgh

Welcome to the Steel City!

Last weekend I got back on the road again with ERAU’s admissions team. As a Women’s Ambassador, I get to travel around the country and support recruitment events with the admissions counselors, which is one of my favorite parts of the job! Last year I traveled to Dallas and Houston for their regional admissions presentations. This is my senior year, and my first trip of senior year was to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania!

This trip took place over the weekend of September 23-24, which meant I left Saturday and came back Sunday, spending around 36 hours in Pittsburgh. I left Daytona bright and early on the 6 AM Delta flight, and I’d made the mistake of getting only three hours of sleep the night before. I slept through the whole flight to Atlanta, only waking up and noticing the sunrise when the aircraft landed.

Sunrise in Atlanta.

Sunrise in Atlanta was beautiful. Since I had a two and a half hour layover, I got to watch the airport wake up with more flights coming and going each hour. I also stopped at a local coffee shop and got an iced caramel latte, which was pretty tasty.

After the time in Atlanta, I jumped on the flight to Pittsburgh. It’s much hillier than I expected up there, and definitely a much different climate than Florida. Thankfully, I had brought a sweatshirt and was adequately prepared. The admissions counselor who I was traveling with got the car, and since it was early afternoon, we stopped for food before checking into the hotel.

Since the presentation wasn’t until the next day, it meant that I had a lot of time to explore! It was raining, but the counselor and I had already planned out a few things we wanted to do. On the way to Pittsburgh, we had made reservations for the local cat cafe.

This kitten was very friendly! Too bad I couldn’t take him home…

I really enjoyed the cat cafe- it made me miss my two cats back at home. I try and visit cat cafes in as many cities as I can to see all the cats around the US. Pittsburgh was a great addition, and lucky for us, the restaurant we chose was nearby. It was a Japanese restaurant, and I got the tofu udon which tasted amazing.

At night we intended to go to the incline and get a good look around the city, but it was raining, so we decided not to. Instead we headed back to the hotel room and rested before the presentation the next day. Honestly, after only three hours of sleep, I needed it- I went to bed around 10 PM and woke up eleven hours later.

The reception, like all of them, was held in a nice hotel. The way they work is the same- an admissions representative will talk about the school’s academics, organizations, professional opportunities and then the campuses. Sometimes there are two- one from Daytona and one from Prescott- but in Pittsburgh it was only us from Daytona. I also got the opportunity to speak a bit about my experiences in organizations and how I got internships.

Accepted student receptions!

After the presentation is over, people are free to stick around and ask us questions or leave. Each region of the US has a regional admissions counselor that comes to the presentation, and that person will be handling applications from that region. I also usually get a few questions after the presentation about student life or the aerospace engineering curriculum.

Once everyone left, we headed to the airport. The presentation was scheduled from 1 PM to 3 PM, and I had a 6:30 PM flight. Thankfully, the TSA lines were pretty short, and I got through in about ten minutes. The Pittsburgh airport is really nice, it’s got a bunch of food options centrally located, and I chose pizza. There is also a seating area watching the gates, where I stopped to do some homework. When I travel for admissions, I don’t get a free pass on my homework, I still have to do it on time.

On the way back to Daytona, I had a one-hour layover in Atlanta. Since that airport is huge, I pretty much went straight to the gate and waited for my zone to board. I like window seats for short flights, and I had window seats on the way back. I’d also heard that you can collect trading cards of Delta’s fleet, and I was able to get some on the flight into Daytona. In my opinion, the Pittsburgh trip was awesome- I got to see a new city, meet new people, and collect airline trading cards. Maybe I’ll see you at a regional admissions presentation, too. If not, I’ll see you in the next post… and hopefully at Riddle!