Excited to meet their other-office colleagues and visit the newly completed One World Trade Center office, GRA’s interns met up this past week for a day in the Big Apple. The team gathered bright and early on the 83rd floor where a beautiful view of the NY skyline greeted them. Everyone got acquainted and stories were told.
“It was great to welcome the DC interns to New York. The experience helped me to reflect on how much I myself have been welcomed by the New York full-time staff in such a short period of time. I enjoyed exploring Tribeca and learning more about the city I’m learning to call home.” – Christy Abraham, NY Intern
First up was brunch in Tribeca, a former industrial neighborhood that has evolved into a neighborhood replete with high-end restaurants and lofts. The DC and NY cohorts shared pancakes and omelets, and learned about how everyone came to be at GRA. It is quite remarkable just how diverse the group is. People hail from all over the country; California to Alabama, Florida to Pennsylvania. Some are veterans, others current students and recent grads studying computing science, international relations, mathematics, and biology.
“It was so valuable to be able to come together as a team and get to know the rest of the company. From now on, it will be all familiar faces, even when working across offices.” – Ryan Lindeborg, DC Intern
Traversing the cobblestone streets and historic warehouse buildings, the group made its way to Battery Park for the ferry ride over to the Statue of Liberty. Cue the Kodak moments. Although all recognize the statue as a national icon, it is something else to stand right below it. Its grandeur is all the more perceptible.
Passing by Ellis Island, our interns were able to appreciate the historical significance of the site. GRA tries to embody the qualities that so many of the people who passed through those walls possessed: determination and perseverance.
“Intern day was an opportunity for me to learn more about the company mission and some of the projects that I wouldn’t otherwise work on. More importantly, I had a great time bonding with and learning from some incredible coworkers.” – Max Okabayashi, DC Intern
Next up was 18 holes of mini golf on the waterfront. In a friendly match between the offices, New York came on top by 2 strokes. Suffice it to say our interns could all use a little more practice on the green. Even in something so light-hearted as mini golf though, the group learned the value of teamwork.
“At GRA I feel like my contributions to the team are valuable. Intern day was a great opportunity to meet and bond with the awesome people in NYC and learn more about GRA and its goals.” – Michael Beaver, DC Intern
Lastly, our interns got to enjoy a company dinner at Trinity Place, a restaurant in the heart of the Financial District, aptly housed in an old bank vault. The last couple hours together were enjoyed with good food over good conversation.
“I really feel like a part of the GRA team and everyone seems genuinely interested in getting to know the interns and appreciates them. Intern day was a great way to enjoy what the city has to offer and learn about our DC counterparts.” — Jordan Whitlow, NY Intern
After a full day of team building, it can most certainly be said our interns gained a lot from the experience. Most importantly, though, everyone was able to reflect on GRA’s core values and leave with a greater sense of purpose for the work they are doing.