Oh the places we’ll go…

by Katherine Wilson, Assistant Director of Admissions

Seattle's waking up! View from the ferry to Bainbridge Island.

What an incredible season this has been. As you may have gathered from Jamie, Brenda, Caroline, Andrew and Patrick’s earlier posts…it’s travel season! Each fall, your favorite Mason Admissions Counselors take their heart and soul out on the road by spreading a little Mason love and “Patriot Pride” throughout the rest of the nation. If you’re a high school student and have spotted us visiting your school’s college/career center, a college fair, or…just as likely…a local coffee shop, then you know the drill. We have the unique opportunity to meet prospective students in various cities and suburbs, which is incredibly helpful as we will be counseling them throughout the Mason admissions process. So far, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting potential Patriots in their hometowns within Arizona, Colorado, Washington, and Montgomery County, Maryland. Right now, I’m writing from “Blackbird Bakery” on Bainbridge Island…an adorable, beautiful island in Washington. Special thanks to Makaila, a junior at Bainbridge High School, for this great recommendation! It was certainly an early morning to catch the ferry over to the island, but well worth it. Check out my view from the ferry at 7:15 am, up top!

Hellooo Arizona!

But for now, let’s backtrack a bit to my Arizona adventures two weeks ago. What a beautiful state.  Between the breathtaking sunsets, the captivating cacti, the desert valley drive from Phoenix to Tucson, and the inspirational art walk in downtown Phoenix on October’s First Friday, I was in love! My week kicked off with the Greater Phoenix NACAC at the Phoenix Convention Center, and I was so pleased at the overwhelming amount of interest in Mason. Students and parents alike offered excellent conversation and questions about our courses, university life, proximity to D.C., and the small discussion-based classroom atmosphere that’s such a hidden gem within our public university status. Other college fairs and high school visits led me to Tempe, Mesa, Scottsdale, Glendale, and greater Tucson. If you saw me around – leave a comment and keep in touch!

You’ll notice (as you read my future posts) a trend – I am IN LOVE with coffee shops, and have to share at least one new favorite with you all from each of my visits. So this year…The Arizona Coffee Shop Award goes to…..LUX Coffeebar in Phoenix! Each room surprises you with a splash of modern art and decor, while their food and coffee are both unique and soulfully created. Special thanks to Nicole,  the Director of College Counselor at Glendale Prep, for this amazing recommendation:

Iced Mocha & a Potato Cheddar Quiche!

Dodging the unbelievable canyons in western Colorado

Next stop was – Coloradoooo! My first few days led me all over the beautiful state. I kicked things off in Aspen for the Western Slope College Fair, and oh my goodness…what a view! Many thanks to Kathy, Director of College Counseling at Aspen High School, for making this trip such a great experience. Hundreds of college representatives were present, and students from over 60 high schools from the Western slope of Colorado came out to meet us. What a great day! My travels continued to beautiful Colorado Springs, and to fabulous Ft. Collins, then finished off the rest of the week in and around the famous mile-high-city of Denver. Here are just two of the numerous images I was able to capture along my travels:


A gorgeous glimpse of Autumn along a snowy mountainside

Let’s not forget my award…and The Colorado Coffees Shop Award goes to…Tattered Cover Book Store in downtown Denver! It’s like a bookstore and a coffee shop got married, and bought an enormous multi-level apartment downtown with year-long Christmas lights inside. I loved this place! The thanks for this recommendation goes to the world’s best sister, Carolyn Wilson Baughman (hidden plug, because I love my sister – she’s a freelance writer-producer, and the “Chief Redhead” for Redhead Creative). When you’re on the road for a month, a good coffee shop is home – free wireless to get emails answered and work done, and a good ol’ cup of coffee/iced mocha/cup of tea just means the world.

So now here I am in beautiful, waterfront-surrounded Seattle. And for my next visit, you ask? San Francisco and the bay area of California! Stay tuned next week for my adventures there, and a recap of my unforgettable time out here in Seattle (including a video from Pike Place’s fish market as well!

Happy reading…