A Little Bit of London–Abby Ware

How’s it going JMU?! We’re about halfway through the summer after a great 2010-2011 year and I’m already anxious to get back to school. I hope you all have been enjoying time relaxing, working, volunteering or studying abroad. For the incoming Class of 2015, I hope you are all excited to begin your 4 years at JMU! Get pumped because you all are going to have a blast. Who knows, maybe I will be your First YeaR Orientation Guide for 1787 August Orientation.

While I’m excited to get back to JMU, there is a lot of preparation that needs to be done before the 2011-2012 school year begins. I have been working on a couple of things since classes have ended and the summer has begun:

  • SGA Fall Retreat: is always a great time for SGA members to get to know one another, establish new goals, and set an exciting and ambitious tone for the new school year. The date has been set for September 23-24 and I’m already really excited! We’re ready for new members with new ideas so get ready to see some big things come out of this retreat. Please let us know if there are specific things you would like SGA to discuss at the retreat and we’ll get right to them!

My biggest effort this summer has been put into my study abroad experience in London. I am taking a course on Diversity in the British Workplace. Though I have to say, the best part about studying abroad in London is that I am also interning at the British Parliament. I have been interning for Member of Parliament, Graeme Morrice, who is quite the jokester. He actually almost had me curtsy in front of the Speaker of the House of Commons, telling me it was what I had to do when he walked by. By that point I didn’t understand British humor. I certainly do now!

Through interning at Parliament, I have gained a lot of insight that I plan to bring break to JMU dealing with how government works in the UK. At the beginning of each day the House of Commons goes into “Parliamentary Questions.” Members of Parliament ask on-the-spot questions to elected and appointed government figures, like the Prime Minister or Deputy Prime Minister. I would like this style of questioning to be considered with SGA. We could have a time designated in SGA meetings and possibly time expanding outside SGA meetings to have non-SGA members and SGA members ask questions. These on-the-spot questions will be directed to the SGA Executive Board, Staff, Committee Chairs, or Senators about what they are doing and the impact they are providing. This could give insight on how SGA is getting its goals accomplished as well as provide students an outlet to express their voices. This is one of the many ideas I hope to bring back!

Besides all of the fun Parliamentary business, London has been incredible. I love going on runs in Hyde Park, eating lunch in Parliament, going to local markets, and exploring the many facets and neighborhoods of London. I also have had the amazing opportunities to travel to Ireland, the Netherlands, and on July 8th I go to Paris! Here is a piece of advice that I have to offer: If you have the opportunity to study abroad, then DO IT! JMU has so many great opportunities to study abroad inside and outside of the country, so take advantage if possible.

That’s all from me JMU!! Thanks for reading and please comment with any questions! If you have any cool study abroad, volunteer, or work stories, then feel free to post them. While London is amazing, I have been missing the JMU love so don’t be shy

Go Dukes!


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