The time I took a random trip to NYC

Remember that time when I told you exciting things are happening, and then I never really told you what happened….well yeah, I am back to explain it!

Long story short, I got sent to New York on a very last minute basis to attend events part of #ClimateWeek, with a sustainable development organisation I volunteer for.

Was it cool? HECK YES!

Was it tiring? Same answer as above…

I am not going to lie, the amount of writing and work I have done on social media both for work and university in the last month is ridiculous! And that probably explains why I have been avoiding blogging, which I miss so much!

So, I thought instead of posting a serious blog, which I have so many ready up my sleeve, I’ll share a few photos and highlights of my week in NYC, that I know you’ll all love!

Let me take you through my week.

I got to attend the Social Good Summit, which is one of the coolest conferences you will ever attend! It is a two day packed event with amazing panelists, awesome attendees, all there to speak about the impact of technology and new media on social good initiatives around the world. If any of you know me, you know how tech-savy I am, and you know how much I am an advocate for everyone taking initiative and using the resources we have to do good in this world. Here are some of the photos I captured on the day. Led by Mashable, United Nations Foundation and 92Y, this event had everyone unite, from actors, to singers, to world leaders, to activists. They were all gathered in the room to have a social discussion about how new media can help us tackle some of the toughest issues discussed in world politics.

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That is Alec Baldwin and Patricia Gualinga speaking about Indigenous people, forests and climate change
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Vice President Joe Bident–>He is also the reason I got in late to this event; security checks were high!
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Media Lounge (A.K.A. The only place acceptable to all be on your phones and laptops when someone is talking)
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I KNOWW-IT’S THE AMAZING DEMI LOVATO
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I still can’t believe it…

I also got to spend most of my time at Columbia University, since majority of the events I attended were held across the Columbia University Schools. Let me tell you one thing, if I went to Columbia I would never leave. The campus is absolutely stunning, each building’s architecture is better than the other! Let me allow you to fall in love with this campus.

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I had to…

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I also was privelaged to attend the Fourth Annual International Conference for Sustainable Development 2016, which was good mostly! I think the highlight was having International Journalist and Writer, Femi Oke moderating the entire event. I had the pleasure of meeting her, and man did she give me a reality check. One thing that stuck by me, which she told me was:

 

“Stop going around and asking people for advice, you’ll only get confused. Do your own thing”-Femi Oke

A bit of background story I walked up to her as an innocent student journalist to ask her about how she made it to the journalism industry, and how I can get there. She had an honest conversation with me, and told me I was wasting my time seeking people’s advice, because it was only going to cloud my judgement. She told me, whatever plan I had in my head to go with it and not let anyone stop me. I had actually told her what my career plan was to make it into the journalism industry, and I must admit she didn’t mutually agree with me, but she made one thing clear and that was to not worry about someone else’s opinion, including hers.

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Femi Oke

In the very little time I had, I also got to do some sightseeing. Let me tell you, New York is exactly how you see it in the movies, beeping cars, impatient drivers, lights, cool dancers in random places, crowded subways and a Starbucks on every corner

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Times Square
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Grand Central Terminal Station (A.K.A. where gossip girl started)
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I stood in the middle of the crowd to take this photo and almost got knocked over…NYC is a bustling city
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Outside Union Square Station
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Empire State Building
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Panorama of Union Square
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The Famous Macys Store
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Where many iconic artists have sold out shows
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Subway in Times Sqaure
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Even the McDonalds is all covered in lights
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I squealed like a little girl on Christmas
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“Lights is Blinding”-Empire State of Mind
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The view from Central Park
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Outside Rockerfeller Centre

Oh and how can I forget! I also got to enter into the United Nations Headquarters…no biggie!

Actually, a major biggie! This has been on my bucket list, and I am so honoured to have attended a session on SDGs coming to life, in the presence of world leaders like Ban Ki Moon!

Even though I had only 4 hours of sleep the previous night, lining up for security checks at 8am that morning to enter the UN  building was amazing!

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Just casually sitting in the SGs’ seat

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On the other side of the UN
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Very poor phone camera quality of Ban Ki Moon speaking

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And how can I forget Brooklyn, the town where I wish I had the chance to spend more time in

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Brooklyn Bridge
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Williamsburg Bridge
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Williamsburg Pier

Overall this experience was so surreal. Honestly, I have never been so thankful for this opportunity to attend such an important week in New York. The week where the General Assembly gathers, the week which marks one year since the SDGs have been adopted and I was so glad to be a part of all of it. It was such a great learning experience, and I must say I came back with more inspiration than ever. It’s true when Alicia Keys says “These streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you” 😉

Side Note: I have never seen so many diplomat cars, police escorts and secret intelligence in my life, and man did I feel like I was in a New York movie half the time 😛

 

Once again, thank you to those who keep coming back to this page, even though I leave you hanging for so long. I promise you I’m going places and I am taking you guys with me!

Until then,

Keep Smiling 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

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