Washington, D.C. #3: A Great Lunch Conversation

Lillian Regal ’24, reflects on the meaning of “personal values and identity.”

I applied for this trip for many reasons- to feed my love of history, to explore a city I’ve never visited, to observe leadership skills – but mainly to see how people develop their personal values and identity. As my sophomore year flies by and the college search process looms ever closer, I’ve been thinking about what path I want to take in life. A lot of students at Deerfield seem to have their future careers all laid out: they’ll go to this school, major in that area, and end up working in this exact job. I, however, have no idea what’s in store for me, which to be frank is completely terrifying. Or at least, it was- until our lunch conversation earlier today with Meridith McGraw. 

Ms. McGraw is a Deerfield alumna who now works as a national political correspondent for Politco. Today, she became my lunch tablemate. 

As we ate lunch, Ms. McGraw told me that she had not originally worked in journalism. In fact, when she entered Deerfield as a new junior, she had planned to follow her parents into medicine. In college, she took part in an interdisciplinary major and planned to go into law. It was two years after she graduated that she changed directions and entered journalism school. 

Ms. McGraw advised us to keep an open mind and to explore our interests. She proved that it’s possible to change paths in life. It’s comforting to know that other people were in the same spot that I am and came out of it successful, fulfilled, and driven. 

Although our first day in DC was rainy and cold, it was definitely an inspiring start to our trip. 

-Lillian Regal ’24