For the Ethnic New York Class, we had to create a presentation regarding the neighborhoods in which we live. I live in Stuyvesant Town. To create this presentation, I had to write up a research paper on my neighborhood, conduct ethnographic field notes, and carry out an interview with a native from my neighborhood. It was pretty interesting to learn the history of the area that became Stuyvesant Town, which was called the Gashouse District, and seeing how different it was to the neighborhood today. The transition from the Gashouse District to Stuyvesant Town was one that affected the race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status of residents of that area. I thought it was also interesting to hear how the neighborhood did not change much at all from when my interviewee moved in to the present day. Physically putting together the presentation was also fun in a certain kind of way.
In my Epidemiology class, I, along with my group members Nicolette and Jared, developed a theoretical proposal to create a diabetic clinic in the neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant. In addition to the data on the neighborhood’s data on diabetes, I found that Bedford-Stuyvesant is on the lower end in terms of both healthcare and poverty rates, with many people never going to a hospital, despite needing care, and a poverty rate of 33%. Since the diabetes rate was also rather high (16%), we wanted to open up a clinic that would be affordable and may encourage residents to approach their personal health in a more effective manner.
For me, it was rather challenging to figure out which neighborhood to choose in Brooklyn and what issue we wanted to focus on. There are many neighborhoods in Brooklyn with serious health conditions affecting the and there are numerous health problems in just the Bedford-Stuyvesant area. Learning that the clinic could not be a complete solution to everything diabetes related was a little frustrating, as the clinic could not logistically support most of the diabetes at Bedford-Stuyvesant at a any specific time, due to factors like space, supplies, money, and ease of access.
For me, I think researching more into public or private grants related to diabetic healthcare, or the encouragement of the creation of more of it, would be helpful.
Last April, as part of our US History curriculum, our class was assigned to give a tour to participants of the GO Project. This tour would have had to been an hour long and have had to focus on the history of the area surrounding Grace Church High School. Together with David Lampietti and Rio Hope-Gund, we decided to focus on the counterculture on the 60s and 70s, with particular focus on the peaceful protests that occurred during the setting. We planned out our route, and were fully prepared to execute our tour. When leading the tour, our route got blocked by a Bernie Sanders rally, which really helped to illustrate our topic. I feel like the participants learned a lot and gained a new appreciation for the city that they live in, as well as its history.
For the YPI service project, my group chose Teenage Pregnancy as our social issue. At first I didn’t really care about the social issue as much as I do now. I originally thought that teen pregnancy was just a thing that happened to teenagers when they act a bit stupid. However, my opinion changed when my group went to the Covenant House Mother/Child Headquarters and I learned of the struggles of these teenage mothers. I learned that being a teenage mother is very psychologically and economically challenging and that many children of teen mothers stay in poverty.
There were many challenges and difficulties associated with the project that me and my group members had to overcome. My group found it hardest to organize the visit to the Headquarters, as it was difficult to organize a time that was lenient to all group-member’s schedules. What i found most rewarding about the project was when visiting the Headquarters and seeing the little children. This was really heartwarming to me personally. I personally could help Covenant House out by donating diapers and wipes to them.
Works Cited: None