BY FATIMA NANAVATI
The election season has meant a lot more than just a few campaign ads and lawn signs for SAIS D.C. students. They have been living in the heat of the action for months and by now, you would be hard-pressed to find a SAISer who didn’t have a strong opinion about the running candidates or chaotic spectacle as a whole. So as tensions ran high, it was no surprise that the final presidential debate stood as a SAIS student’s political Super Bowl. On Oct. 19, Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton took stage at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas for the last head-to-head battle in the 2016 race.
In light of the highly anticipated event, the SAIS Review held a fun and entertaining debate viewing party at the FrontPage, a local pub in DuPont Circle. Students were able to grab a free drink and some snacks before the showdown began. In the midst of 90 long minutes of (warranted) heckling, there were debate night bingo cards as well as bets in play for “how many times candidates would shamelessly interrupt one another.” Needless to say, watching the debate on the big screen was equal parts hilarious, nerve-wracking and frustrating as SAISers heard known classroom topics of fiscal policy and military intervention in play.
With only weeks remaining to Election Day on Nov. 8, this debate was bound to be a controversial event amongst SAIS students. We asked the SAIS Review Editorial Board why they decided to host this viewing party as their first big social event and they said, “the US election has a profound impact not only on domestic political issues, but also on the world, we thought that the SAIS Review 2016 Debate Watch Party was a great way to both explore the candidates who could reshape our world and have fun.” Since the SAIS Review strives to engage students, faculty and foreign policy practitioners to examine pressing global political, economic and security issues, it was great to see them take heed of this turbulent election season.
Most people know the SAIS Review as an academic journal but as their readership and writer-ship expands, the group hopes to develop as well. In addition to publishing incisive scholarly commentary on international relations, they actively promote the events and publications of their parent organization, the Foreign Policy Institute. The network of connections that the SAIS Review offers continues to provide students with a unique opportunity to interact and gain scholarly exposure with personalities that influence contemporary international affairs. The journal is always looking for contributors as their website provides a platform for students to debut their own work to a professional and academic audience.
Since their debate viewing party was such a great success, the Observer Staff looks forward to seeing what else the SAIS Review has in store. Up next on the docket is the premier of their latest print issue for Summer-Fall 2016: “Terra Incognita: Ungoverned Spaces – Space and Technology.” The launch event will be held on Tuesday November 15 in the Kenney Auditorium and will feature several panelists speaking on the state of ungoverned spaces in influential areas of international relations and economics. Be there by 10:30 a.m. to grab a good seat and some tasty snacks!
For more information on contributing to the SAIS Review, email firstname.lastname@example.org