While most students will head home this week for Thanksgiving, sophomore Katie Hendricks will head back to her room in The Schenley to relax and catch up on work.
“It’s just going to be a nice, boring, relaxing weekend,” Hendricks said.
An Oregon native, Hendricks said she spent almost two full days of her four-day Thanksgiving break traveling last year, only to return to hours of schoolwork.
“Traveling is always stressful,” Hendricks said. “I’m sure if I were a train ride or a two-hour flight away it would be a different story.”
Sophomore Molly Conway, of Naperville, Ill., will also spend Thanksgiving in Foggy Bottom.
“My last final is the first day of finals, so I am going home two weeks later anyway, so it isn’t a huge deal,” Conway said.
Conway added that she plans to see some of the city’s attractions this weekend.
“I thought it would be fun to have some time to spend being a tourist,” Conway said. “I have been here for a year and a half so far and I feel as though I really have not taken the time to visit any museums or monuments other than the Lincoln, Vietnam and Korean memorials.”
Students staying on campus can attend a buffet at the University Club from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving. The second annual event is sponsored by Marvin Center Conferences and students can pay the $10 fee using Colonial Cash.
While 25 students attended the dinner last year, Danielle Lico, associate director of University Conferences, expects turnout to increase this year.
“We really tried to get the word out to parents through the Office of Parent Services, to students through the residence halls and to international students through the ISO,” Lico said.
Some of the approximately 2,000 international students will use the break to learn about the American tradition of Thanksgiving instead of traveling home.
“I celebrate Thanksgiving with friends or family friends since I am interested in getting immersed into (American) culture and it’s an interesting experience to learn more about American festivals,” said Mitali Khera, a junior from India.
Although there are no University-sponsored events specifically for international students, those staying in D.C. can attend a Thanksgiving dinner sponsored by the D.C. International Connection, an international networking group.
“International students often attend events sponsored by this organization, but I wish we had something (for Thanksgiving) on campus,” said Joanna Karwacka, a coordinator at GW’s International Student and Scholar Program. “We’re trying to develop this more.”
Another Thanksgiving dinner will take place Friday at the Mount Vernon Campus. The event is free and will be sponsored by Mount Vernon Campus Life.
Robert Snyder, special assistant to Dean Fred Siegel, who oversees the campus, said about 40 students attended the event last year and that details of this year’s dinner are still being worked out.
“Since it is being sponsored by Mount Vernon Campus Life, it is primarily for Mount Vernon residents, however if they have a friend who is a Foggy Bottom resident, we certainly wouldn’t turn them away,” Snyder said.
The Office of Parent Services also sent an e-mail to parents encouraging them to host their child’s friends who are not able to travel home for the weekend.