Author: Jack Andrews, senior
This is the third post in a series of four posts written by the Summer 2019 Honors Internship Fellows. The students received a stipend that enabled them to work at non-profit organizations for the common good.
The Fordham Honors Program can, at any time, signify a variety of different things to different people. If you ask a rising sophomore, it might call to mind the chronological study of the different periods into which scholars have divided history; to a senior, it might be a large and looming paper upon which his or her graduation relies. However, along with the different demands of the academic syllabi of the Honors Program is the consistent expectation that Honors students will use the educational and professional opportunities they have received for the betterment of themselves and others. As such, the Honors Summer Internship Fellowship application demands from its potential recipients a cover letter describing their understanding of the common good and how their various internships further it.
I was graced with the Honors Summer Internship Fellowship, and, thus, with the ability to accept an internship with South Bronx United, a local youth organization combining soccer and academics with the hope of animating Bronx kids to excel in high school and pursue college educations. My role at South Bronx United, as an education intern, was to serve as a classroom aide and mentor to a cohort of rising ninth graders who all attended SBU’s Summer Soccer Scholars program—as well as to coach a recreational soccer team comprised of students of different age groups within the program.
Many of the students with whom I worked were from immigrant families from places like Mexico, Venezuela, and Ecuador—and many had complex immigration stories. As someone both pursuing a Spanish minor and with aspirations to become an immigration lawyer, working with a group of people I hope to serve in the future was a dream come true. My students were a daily reminder as to why I was passionate about my potential career; they were intelligent, driven, and compassionate individuals who, in addition to loving soccer, felt an obligation to achieve to their highest potential for the parents and guardians who gave them the chance to do so. They also taught me some new words in Spanish, although I might not rush to use them in a professional setting. I can’t wait to hear, a few years from now, where my students plan to attend college, and I am forever grateful to the Honors Program and Dr. Keller for making this summer possible.