Community Service & Living in NYC
Question: What kinds of service opportunities are available to get involved with on campus and within the community? Also, what is it like going to college in a big city and what is it like adjusting to this environment? Do you have any advice for someone who is very excited but also anxious about the idea of living in a big city?
Answer: Barnard has a program called the New York City Civic Engagement Program (NYCCEP) which facilitates students getting involved in the greater New York City community through activism, politics, or community service. There are also a lot of clubs which do community outreach and service here and at Columbia (which Barnard students can partake in, too), including many which engage with students from pre-K to 12th grade in New York City, such as Artists Reaching Out, Mentoring Youth in New York City, and the Toddler Learning Center.
As for your questions about New York City ... I am originally from a much more suburban area of New York City and it was definitely a big change living in Manhattan. That being said, I love living in the big city! While Morningside Heights is definitely not the suburbs, it is also certainly not overpacked with people and there is quiet on campus. I love that spaces are not too crowded in our neighborhood, but if I want to, I can take the subway and be at 42nd Street in 15 minutes. I think the best thing to do when moving to a big city is to stay positive: yes, you're going to be in a city of lots of people, but all those people bring along opportunities of all kinds. Since New York City is huge with just about any kind of person you can think of, you will definitely find your people and community here, not only at Barnard but in NYC as well.
- Cassandra Clifford '21
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