First-Year Orientation to Community Involvement
First-Year Orientation to Community Involvement (FOCI) is an intensive pre-orientation program for incoming first-year and transfer students. FOCI serves as an introduction to community service, activism, and social justice issues in Washington, DC. FOCI participants actively engage in community service; discover and reflect on the diverse populations, perspectives, and roles that exist in the Georgetown and greater DC communities; develop leadership skills; and become part of a community committed to personal growth through service and reflection. FOCI activities address a wide variety of social justice issues, including education, sustainability, gentrification, immigration, LGBTQ access, and hunger and homelessness. The week involves lively discussions with Campus Ministry, faculty, student leaders, and DC community members.
Questions? Email CSJ’s Deputy Director, Ray Shiu.
Opportunities to Get Involved
FOCI 2023 Leader Team
Interested in applying for a leadership position with the First-Year Orientation to Community Involvement (FOCI) for the 2023 program? FOCI is CSJ’s pre-orientation program for incoming first-year and transfer students. The program invites students into service, social justice activism, community-building and engagement in DC and at Georgetown.
The Leader Team will mentor and guide the students as they engage in meaningful community service; discover and reflect on the diverse perspectives and roles of people in the Georgetown and Washington, DC communities; develop the capacity for leadership; and become part of a community committed to personal growth through social justice. Leaders will participate in and facilitate difficult conversations to advance antiracism, approach solidarity, understand privilege, and build skills and grow to advance social justice.
The application for the FOCI 2023 leader position will open in late Fall 2022 semester. Undergraduate students my volunteer for these positions or apply their FWS Awards. Six of the 12-14 Leader Team positions will include summer housing (see details in the application). The priority deadline for the application is forthcoming. Email questions to CSJ’s Deputy Director, Ray Shiu, at email@example.com.
FOCI 2023 co-captains
Sarah Tyree (C’24)
Sarah is a member of the Class of 2024 of the College of Arts and Sciences, studying Government and Justice and Peace Studies. She is originally from Fort Worth, Texas. Sarah’s involvement with the Center for Social Justice began in 2022 as a FOCI 38 Team Leader and continued as a Fall 2022 Center Operations Intern. She loved her time on the FOCI 38 Team so much that she applied to be Co-Captain this year. Outside of the CSJ, Sarah serves as the Vice President of Internal of the Asian American Student Association, the Secretary for the Students of Color Alliance, and heads the Georgetown Alliance of Fostered and Adopted Students.
Miray Samuel (C’25)
Miray is a member of the Class of 2025 of the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Biochemistry and minoring in Public Health. She has been involved with the CSJ as a FOCIan for FOCI 37 and as a participant in the Alternative Breaks Program (ABP) 2022, and is excited to be leading FOCI 38 as well as the Spring Break in Appalachia trip for ABP 2023. Outside of the CSJ, Miray is involved in biochemistry research in the Maillard Lab, GU Women of Color, and Cura Terra Environmental Research Journal. During her free time, Miray loves to watch movies with friends and go out to eat in DC!
Incoming First-Year Students
You will receive pre-orientation information after May 1, 2023 from Georgetown University. To apply, visit Georgetown’s Pre-Orientation page and select FOCI on your application.
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.
“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