Meet NYUDC Global Peer Mentor, Akash!

Throughout the semester, you will have the opportunity to hear from NYU Washington, DC, alumni to gain their firsthand insight and tips.

Today, meet Akash, who studied in DC in Fall 2015 and Spring 2016.

akash_dcMajor: Economics and Politics

What is your favorite memory about your time abroad? It’s a tough tossup between walking into an elevator with Dick Cheney and Arthur Brooks chatting inside, and getting to interact with Arun Jaitley, India’s finance minister. These experiences, while initially surreal, started to become normal, and is the usual fare in DC. These prominent individuals are also more often than not up for a chat, so make use of the opportunity to pick their brains!

What was the most interesting course you took and why?  My social foundations class was the most interesting, because it used the city’s history to its advantage, as we discussed the philosophies and justifications of the wars which so many memorials around the capital exist to commemorate.

What two things do you wish you had packed? I wished I had been slightly better prepared for the winter (but it doesn’t compare to New York’s, of course), and a picnic mat for some nice meals on the Mall!

What do you miss most? I miss going out at night to walk around the monuments and the Mall! The sight of the Washington Monument, with snow at its base, from the Lincoln Memorial is still one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen in this country.

What advice would you give about housing? NYUDC housing is great and the staff are extremely friendly. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, or suggest anything that you thing is lacking/could be interesting as an event!

If there’s one thing students should know about DC, it is: There is always someone important speaking somewhere you can go for free. Whether you’re interested in politics or music, America or Azerbaijan, DC attracts people at the top of their field, regardless of what that is. There is always a diverse range of events happening on any given day, and there are lovely and bright people to meet and network with at all of them.

If you could go back in time and do one thing differently, what would it be? I would be getting out more to try to see the other quadrants of the city. DC is a fascinating place, but staying in the NW/SW quadrants, where the campus and the usual famous things are, limits you from seeing the rest of the city. There are interesting things to discover everywhere, with different communities across the cities telling the history not only of the capital but also of the country.