Thursday, June 23, 2016

The Big Apple

Good Morning Bashers! It has been two long blog-less weeks so I hope you are all ready! I am very excited to tell you all about my trip in New York that will be broken up into a few blogs!

Day 1:

So for those of you who don't know, I was picked for the ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum in New York! I had never been to NY so I couldn't wait! I woke up on Tuesday morning ready to embark on my new adventure. My mom drove me to the airport and I waited about an hour before boarding my flight to Newark! Once I arrived in Newark I had a bit of a challenge finding my bags, but with a little help everything was okay! I then met about 10 ANNpower fellows as we boarded a truck to our hotel, Intercontinental Times Square!

After about an hour drive (due to traffic) we arrived at out hotel to meet the other ANNpower fellows! I initially found my roommate named Leigh from Louisiana! Once all 50 of us were situated into the hotel we were told it was time to go to the ANN Inc. offices, which is the office for Ann Taylor, Loft, and Lou & Grey. We stepped into Times Square and I was immediately overwhelmed with happiness! I loved the atmosphere of so many people and there was music everywhere. The walk to ANN Inc. was only 8 minutes (probably should have been shorter, but I kept stopping to take pictures lol.)

We then entered the building with hundreds of floors and found our designated room that said, "Welcome ANNpower Fellows." I spotted a light purple name tag that had my name on it and realized that this was all real! The first person we met was Mr. Gary Muto the CEO of ANN Inc., who welcomed us to the program! Throughout the rest of the day we had group activities to get to know each other, which us where I met a girl named Caitlyn and we immediately clicked! We then met our Vital Voices mentors who were women who have done extraordinary things in their community! Our last presentation for the day was about how to present yourself online and offline. After a very long day we went to dinner at Carmine's! The first day of my trip really opened my eyes to so much and I could not wait for the rest of the trip!

Stay tuned for Day 2 of my adventure!!

Stay strong & stay positive,
Courtney Jay 💜

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