“You go to school in the Bronx?!”
Regardless of the fact that I live an hour from Fordham's Rose Hill Campus, many of my friends and family are ignorant to the Fordham campus and surroundings. Most people have developed a mindset that students at city schools live and take classes in apartment buildings mixed in among the hustle and bustle of a city like the Bronx. In Fordham's case, this stereotype is far from the truth.
Fordham’s eighty-five acres is full of spacious green lawns and beautiful stone buildings. The campus is surrounded by both urban life and nature. To the west of campus is Fordham Road, a bustling city street with shops, apartments and crowds of people. To the east is the New York Botanical Gardens, one of the most peaceful places in NYC.
The 250 acres of the Botanical Gardens is open to all Fordham students. There are wooded trails, a rose garden, a rock garden, a conservatory and a children’s garden. On Wednesdays there is a farmer’s market with locally grown fruit and vegetables.
I use the Botanical Gardens for two reasons. One is to run; I can aimlessly run (and walk) for hours around the paths of the 250 acres of enclosed space. The second reason I frequent the gardens is I volunteer in the Children’s Adventure Garden.
The youth garden is a separate space within the Botanical Gardens that houses a hedge maze, hands-on activities and an indoor laboratory.
My friend and I spend a few hours every week assisting as Explainers to school groups in the mornings and families in the afternoons.
I am not a science major, I am not even a huge environmentalist, but volunteering there is an awesome experience. The people who organize the youth programs are so welcoming and accommodating and I have learned so much about plants, animals and even the Bronx.
So, to all my friends and family back home, “yes, I do go to school in the Bronx, and it is an amazing place.”