The Ivy League Club students visited the Ivy League schools on April 6-8, 2015 during spring break. The trip was 3 days and 2 nights long. There were 6 students, 3 parents, and 2 chaperones. We visited four out of eight Ivy League schools.



Day 1 – Monday, April 6, 2015


6:00 AM: In a five hour drive, the Ivy League Club departed from CLF to New Haven, Connecticut via Van A driven by Mrs. Milline and Van B driven by Mr. Alisher.


12:30 AM: The Ivy League club stopped for a quick lunch at Frank Pepe Pizzeria (one of the oldest pizzerias in the United States). While at the pizzeria, Mr. Orak and student Taylor Gift (two of the slowest eaters on the entirety of East Coast) decided to have a competition as who could eat the fastest due to being on a time crunch. It is to be noted that Mr. Orak won while simultaneously burning his mouth J


1:30 PM – 4:30 PM: Ivy League Club visits Yale University and are given an exclusive tour of the campus as well as attend an extensive student orientation. Yale University is the third oldest institution of higher education in the United States. Out of all of the universities visited in the tour, Yale seemed the most popular among the students on the tour. Students liked the 2-week shopping system at Yale which lets the students attend any class during the first two weeks and then decide which ones to attend. Another memory from Yale was Sydney being stung on hand by an unknown insect. She scared us but then she was fine. The unknown insect was interpreted as the Yale seal for Sydney’s future acceptance to the Yale University J


6:00 PM: Ivy League Club stops in Brooklyn, New York for dinner at Aba Istanbul – a unique restaurant filled with delicious treats and authentic flavors. It is to be noted for investigative interest that baklava is purchased from this place by Mr. Orak and placed in Van B J


8:00 PM:  Ivy League Club visits the Empire State building. The Empire State Building (380 m tall) stood as the world’s tallest building for 40 years since 1931. It was constructed with the Art Deco style by Homer Balcom. It took one hour to reach the top of the building due to the line for the elevators. Elevators were so fast that we traveled 86 floors in less than a minute. Many selfies were taken on the top floors of the tower than overlooked the rich New York nightlife and East River. Those who decided to brave the cold and sleepiness (aka all of the members of Van A) decided to go explore Time Square.


10:00 PM: After the long day, we checked in our hotel at in Secaucus, NJ.



Day 2 – Tuesday, April 7, 2015


9:00 AM: After having a continental breakfast at the hotel, we departed from the hotel with the plan of stopping by the Statue of Liberty New York access first. Due to the traffic, we weren’t able to find a parking place. We headed to the Columbia University postponing the Statue of Liberty sightseeing to the afternoon.


11:00 AM – Noon: Students receive a brief tour at Columbia University, highlighting the required swim test for students outside of the Engineering program and the underground gymnasium. Afterwards, students stopped for a lunch of gyro wraps from a Mediterranean restaurant. It is at this point that baklava has been noted to be missing by the Van B students and Mr. Alisher is the prime suspect due to his “suspicious sleep-snacking” J


1:30 PM – 4:30 PM: Ivy League Club Students tour Princeton University and receive an orientation. Princeton University has the most Abel Prize winners and Fields Medalists alumni of any university. The orientation received at Princeton notably highlights the key aspects of a college application and as well as advanced fundamentals students need in their high school life.


6:00 PM – 11:00 PM: Ivy League Club visited the Statue of Liberty in the midst of the rain and cold. Students proceed to find warmth in restrooms. Afterwards, Ivy League Club went to Ant Store & Cafe for salep – a nutritious hot drink made from the tubers of the orchid genus Orchis. Then, the Club went to a family hosted dinner. One of the most notable features of the family visit was the presence of adorable baby kittens (who were only two days old). Additionally, the baklava case was closed because the host family served delicious baklava with hot tea. We ate more baklava than the lost baklava that we have been tracking J


Day 3 – Wednesday, April 8, 2015


9:00 AM: On the last day, we checked out from the hotel after another continental breakfast. Then, we headed to shopping in two different directions: Van A to Forever 21 and Van B to Taskin Bakery for fresh Turkish bread.


11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Students visit Ebru TV studio and learn about the process and structure of televised broadcasting. Students learn about dubbing techniques and have a catered Turkish lunch at the studio. The lunch included all different types of kabobs plus gyro and it was served with ayran (yogurt drink). For the dessert, we had baklava and kadayif, the top 2 Turkish desserts!


2:00 PM – 2:30 PM: Students receive a campus tour of University of Pennsylvania (UPenn). Penn is the oldest private university in United States and was founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1740. Jean was excited to visit the Palestra, Upenn’s basketball stadium.


4:30 PM: After the UPenn tour, we headed to the Liberty Bell Center and the Independence Hall. After the horrible traffic, we made it at 4:30PM right before it was closing! The Liberty Bell Center now hosts the Liberty Bell and acts a museum.


5:00 PM – 6:00 PM: Students depart Pennsylvania to CLF. We had dinner at Chick-Fil-A on our way back. After all the delicious food, ketchup was the point of discussion during the entire trip! We may start a debate club focusing on ketchup J


8:00 PM: After a 3-day trip to some of the best universities in the world, the group arrived at CLF.


Mr. Hakan Orak, Ivy League Club Advisor


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