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Close Up 2016

By Alexander Santana


Two weeks ago, 28 Columbus seniors accompanied by Mr. Linfors and Mr. Ibarra went to our nation’s capital to participate in the Close Up Foundation’s Washington D.C. program.


For 6 days, the 28 seniors were able to explore Washington D.C., visit museums and national landmarks, and participate in workshops about government and American politics. As one of those 28 seniors, I can say that it was an experience that I will never forget. Even though it was great visiting many museums and memorials, the Saudi Arabian Embassy, the National Archives, the U.S. Capitol Building, U.S. Supreme Court, Arlington National Cemetery, and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, what was best was spending time with my Columbus brothers. This trip is one of many Columbus memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life.


There were many things that I learned on this trip. I learned more about my government and how it affects me directly, how to be a more active citizen, and how to debate issues in an exciting yet respectful way. As I would visit the Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, and all the other monuments, I learned that in dark and uncertain times you have to be willing to stand up for what you believe in. As I visited the Arlington Cemetery, World War II Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, and all the other memorials, I learned that freedom is truly never free.


Close Up helped me learn more about this great country, learn how to be a more involved citizen and voter, and learn how to stand up for my beliefs with conviction. If you want to learn more about politics, visit historic and unique sites, and learn how to be a more proactive American in your government, this is the right program for you.

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