As many of you know, a huge reason I came to Wagner was due to my love of Manhattan. The people, the hustle and bustle, the opportunities, the food and music culture. The past two months I’ve gotten the opportunity to adventure the streets of NYC, and do things that I used to sit in class in high school and dream of doing. Going to school in this area is like no other-- the city is your campus. While Manhattan is fun for weekends and exploring, I’ve also used it largely in relation to my work for school. I’ve written papers on pieces of artwork at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, visited the New York Public Library to do preliminary research for my American History class, and gone to the Brooklyn Museum to study Feminist art for my writing class.
My Learning Community is titled “Remembering and Representing America,” and features three interconnected classes taught by two professors- a writing class called RFT, Intro to Film, and American Art History. Reading about artwork and looking at documents online and in textbooks is nothing compared to the first-hand experience we get in the city. These field trips had a huge impact on me as a student, they immerse me in the diverse culture of New York City and have an intellectually stimulating aspect to them you can’t find just in the classroom. There are museums all over the country, yes, but it’s not only the required trips to the infinite amount of museums we have to go to before the end of the semester that have an impact on me. The most unique part about these trips is where these museums are. In October, we toured the Lower East Side Tenement Museum- set in the heart of a largely Jewish neighborhood. The nine block walk through the neighborhood from the Spring Street subway platform was almost as culturally informative as the museum tour was. After our trip to the Museum of Chinese in America, we walked through Chinatown and got to eat at authentic Chinese restaurants in the area. When visiting the Brooklyn Museum our professor told us of a Biggie mural that was close by, so we walked through the neighborhoods of Brooklyn exploring wall paintings. A very special part about being a first year student here is having these opportunities, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.