Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching & Service
Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching & Service

First-Year Orientation to Community Involvement

Opportunities to Get Involved

Incoming First-Year Students

The 2024 Pre-Orientation Programs application will open on Monday, May 6, 2024. Students will be able to access the application by clicking the button below.  Applications will close on Sunday, June 9, 2024, at 11:59pm Eastern Standard Time. Applications submitted after this time will not be considered.

The Center for Social Justice invites incoming first-year and transfer students to join Georgetown’s longest-running pre-orientation program. A group of 40 first-year students arrive on campus to spend six days working together in the larger DC community with 14 student leaders experienced in community service and committed to social justice issues. Throughout the week, FOCIans engage in a series of reflections to explore issues of social justice, social responsibility, and identity. FOCI ends immediately prior to the beginning of Georgetown’s New Student Orientation, in which all first-year students participate. All interested incoming first-year students are encouraged to apply. Past service experience is not a prerequisite. Email CSJ’s Deputy Director, Ray Shiu with questions.

Questions? Email CSJ’s Deputy Director, Ray Shiu.

FOCI 2024 co-captains

whiite woman with red hair pulled back smiling

Elspeth Campbell (CAS’26)
Elspeth is a member of the Class of 2026 of the College of Arts and Sciences, pursuing a degree in Mathematics and Economics. She participated in FOCI 38 as an incoming first-year student and served as a leader for FOCI 39 and the Bridges to Social Justice Academy in summer 2023. Outside of her involvement with the Center for Social Justice (CSJ), Elspeth is a member of the Georgetown University Ballroom Dance Team and Contemporary Choir, and writes for the Voice and the Indy. Elspeth is excited to serve as a co-captain for FOCI 40 before moving to the United Kingdom to study at the London School of Economics during the 2024-2025 academic year.

black woman with red braids, wearing a white blouse with red cherries

Kayla Barnes (C’26)
Kayla is a member of the Class of 2026 of the School of Foreign Service, majoring in Culture and Politics and minoring in Italian. She is originally from Columbia, South Carolina. She has been involved with the Center for Social Justice (CSJ) as a FOCIan for FOCI 38 and as a team leader for FOCI 39. Outside of the CSJ, Kayla serves as the Business Operations Manager of the Georgetown GraceNotes and the Black Leadership Forum Representative for GU Women of Color. During her free time, Kayla enjoys watching reality TV, exploring DC with friends, playing Connections, and taking absurd BuzzFeed quizzes.

Participant Testimonials 

FOCI was an incredible way to start off Georgetown! I am truly grateful to my mentors for exposing me to DC, its history, and its social justice issues. It’s a warm community that will never leave you and continues to grow as you meet upperclassmen FOCIans and (soon for me) incoming FOCIans!!”

– Gina K., FOCI 34 participant

FOCI was one of the best experiences of my life. Before most people even arrived on campus, I had formed bonds through service with individuals who were in many ways so different but who all shared a commitment to service and justice. Many of my closest friends remain FOCIans, and they have consistently had my back long past FOCI week itself ended.”

– Leigh B., FOCI 33 participant

FOCI was the perfect way to start my Georgetown career. I was introduced to an entire community that challenged my thoughts and ideals in the best ways imaginable and I am thankful for the opportunity to participate in it every day since.”

– Matt R., FOCI 33 participant

“FOCI has been an experience that has truly shaped my time at Georgetown. It has re-framed my thinking on how to work with (instead of for) the community, and it has given me hope for how to promote social justice both in DC and wherever life takes me next!”

– Kelly K., FOCI 28 participant

“FOCI was the beginning of my transition into the most rewarding, stressful, and challenging time of my life. FOCI taught me, encouraged me, and forced me to ask meaningful questions, some of which I’m still trying to answer. You get to choose how much FOCI ultimately impacts you. I opened myself up to everything it had to offer and have not regretted it for a single moment since.”

– Anthony S., FOCI 30 participant