That Girl: Summer Marion

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March 14, 2008

9:26 AM

In a world where students are often knowledgeable about only their own nation’s politics, Summer Marion offers a refreshing change: Just ask and she will happily talk to you about governmental structures in Asia, the political warfare and struggles in Africa or the most recently elected world leader. While others were still in Williamsburg, stressing out about midterms and gearing up for spring break, I met up with Summer in Istanbul, Turkey. She exuded excitement and even looked European in her tweed jacket and high boots. Summer skipped a week of class for this trip and something tells me that it is more than just a vacation for her. This week’s That Girl has truly found her path to happiness.

p. **So what made you choose Istanbul?**

p. I’ve always wanted to go to a lot of places, but Turkey was definitely on my list. My friend Christina Clark told me she had bought an extremely cheap ticket so I thought this was my chance. I’m not taking that many credits this semester, so this was my opportunity to just peace out and go. My professors were extremely supportive. If anything, the message I got from them was that they wish they could come with me.

p. **What’s been your favorite part of Istanbul so far?**

p. Well, today I did go to a Turkish hamam in Istanbul which is in the book, “1,000 Things to See Before You Die.” We got a real authentic Turkish bath. It includes getting to know the people around you a lot better. We’ll leave it at that. Let’s just call it a very humanizing experience.

p. **Is this something you’ve done in the past — impulsively jet setting to exotic places**

p. You mean serially acting like Ferris Bueller? No. [Laughs].

p. **Haven’t you been fairly involved with the International Relations club?**

p. Up through my junior year I was. It’s a lot of fun. We get to travel a lot and to meet a lot of students from all over the world. It’s a great way to discuss international issues with students who can bring different perspectives. It’s also a wonderful way to get to know professors and even other students that have similar interests. International relations is such a broad field and offered me the opportunity to get to know people in the William and Mary community, as well as those from our nation and around the world. We go to Montreal every year in January, which is usually like negative 40 degrees. My sophomore year I also got to go to Beijing … [it] was the first time I had ever been to Asia.

p. **Describe your perfect date.**

p. [Laughs]. It would involve a lot of wine — a really, really beautiful outdoor setting somewhere and some fantastic wine.

p. **If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?**

p. There’s a really good sushi restaurant in DC. They have a really good lunch buffet.

p. **What was the best story you told prospective students while working at the Admissions Office?**

p. As tour guides, we often give fun facts about ourselves. One that has been popular, although I guess not so appealing, is that I have a hole in my baby toe. When my mother was pregnant, they were giving her an injection in the stomach and they missed. It hit my toe and I wasn’t fully developed yet so it turned into a hole, which I still have. It doesn’t go all the way through my toe, but it’s there.

p. **What else might prospective students find out if they spent the afternoon with you?**

p. They might find out that I am hopelessly addicted to coffee and that whenever I have a five-minute break, I return to my nerdy habit of reading the BBC, which is the homepage on my computer.

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