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'It Reminded Me of a Halloween Oreo': D.C. Area College Students Soak Up Eclipse

The moon covers the sun during a total solar eclipse over J. Percy Priest Dam near Interstate 40 east of downtown Nashville on Aug. 21, 2017. (Jim Brown/IOS via AP Images)

ANNANDALE, Va. – College students just outside of Washington gathered for “Eclipse Mania 2017” on Monday to catch a glimpse of the total solar eclipse.

The physics department at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) obtained 250 solar eclipse glasses from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and distributed them at the Annandale Campus today. College students, faculty, staff and residents of the D.C. metro area passed around the glasses throughout the afternoon so that everyone had a chance to safely watch the rare eclipse unfold.

The next total solar eclipse viewable in the U.S. will take place in April 2024.

“It was something very different. I expected it to be kind of like what I saw in pictures and stuff, but it was more incredible to see it in person. Nothing is better than seeing things in person,” Brandon, a NOVA student, said after looking at the eclipse on the campus.

“I saw that movie with that guy, he turns into a vampire when the moon comes, so that’s what it is,” said Khan, a student at NOVA, as he watched the eclipse.

“It looked like it was nighttime, but it’s not,” said NOVA student Brittany, who saw the eclipse in person and viewed the live NASA feed of the event broadcast outside of the campus’ science building.

“It was pretty cool because it’s kind of bright out here, and when I put it on it was the shape of the moon. It was pretty fascinating to look at because I’ve never seen that before,” said one student, who asked to remain anonymous. “I thought it was going to be a black circle. I’ve never seen it before so I didn’t know what it was like.”

“It reminded me of a Halloween Oreo, you know, the orange one,” said Gabriella, a student at NOVA.

“I thought I was trippin’ for a second because I didn’t have my glasses on but it was actually incredible. I thought it was just like a piece of cloud or something that was on it but if you really look at it, it’s there,” Apolo, another NOVA student, told PJM.

“It was really freaky because I had never seen anything like that, so it was a great experience,” Angelica, another student, said.