Friday, February 28, 2014

GO! on an Experience of a Lifetime!

Here at Fordham, about 90% of the student body participates in community service activities through the Dorothy Day Center for Service and Justice. The largest community service organization on campus is Global Outreach, or GO! as students affectionately call it for short. Students have traveled all around the world to immerse themselves in four main pillars: community, spirituality, simple living, and social justice. 

In May 2013, I went on GO! Navajo, a project in which a group of 12 of us traveled to a Navajo Reservation in Shiprock, NM. Throughout the spring semester, we met weekly as a group to get to know each other better, discuss plans for the project, and talk about what we want to get out of this experience. We also held PB&J sales on Sundays to raise money for the project--they were also a great time to bond as a team! By the time we were leaving for New Mexico, we had become one, big, happy family! 

Upon landing in Albuquerque, we met our "host mom," Jennifer from Via International, the organization we worked closely with to plan the project. We stayed in a beautiful adobe casita in Santa Fe, where we explored the city and volunteered at a horse shelter. 

Next, we drove to Shiprock and met Larry, the owner of the reservation. Through sessions in the hogon (Navajo spiritual room), sunrise ceremonies, traveling to Colorado for a pow-wow and "bear dance," working in the garden, and constructing an adobe house, we became fully immersed in the culture of the Navajo peoples. We learned that "everything is hozho,"which stresses the importance of peace, harmony, and balance in our lives. 

To conclude our experience, we traveled to Arizona, where we visited the Four Corners National Park and hiked down Canyon de Chelly. 

Going on a GO! project was the best part of my Fordham experience. I made lifelong friends, visited a part of the country I have never visited before, and learned a great deal about myself and the injustices that may occur in other parts of the world. I highly recommend doing one! For information about all projects, visit 

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