Author: Megan Farr, junior
I first discovered South Bronx United (SBU) as a first-year student helping put on a resume workshop through Fordham’s College Access program. I fell in love with the SBU students, staff, and mission pretty much instantly. As a first-year student, I had some vague idea that I might like to work in education policy someday, but I knew for sure that I was passionate about equitable education, especially in the Bronx community we’re so lucky to live in at Rose Hill. Working with SBU seemed like a no-brainer for me: I love kids, am passionate about equitable access to educational resources, and enjoy teaching. So I emailed SBU’s Education Director, went through the internship hiring process, and started working with SBU in an official capacity during the fall semester of my sophomore year.
For context, South Bronx United is a local non-profit organization that uses soccer as an outreach tool for students in the Bronx. Two days each week, middle and high school students play on competitive club soccer teams; for another two days each week, they attend after-school tutoring sessions where they get homework help, extracurricular enrichment for math and language arts, and SAT preparation. I’m fairly terrible at soccer, so I work on the academic programming side of SBU. I was an Education Intern my sophomore year and a Room Lead and volunteer tutor this year, my junior year.
My time at SBU has been one of my favorite parts of my time at Fordham — from the serious moments, like when a student confided her troubles with some of her teammates to me, to the funny ones, like when a student put a reminder to do his homework into his phone’s calendar under the name “Megan’s head is going to explode if you don’t do your work.” Even through the start of the pandemic last spring, with the transition to online learning, SBU has been a constant in my life. My friends and family know the names of the students I’m closest to, and I’ve even seen some of my students on Fordham Road and the subway.
My experience with SBU has aligned beautifully with my Honors experience – learning to work collaboratively with Honors students has made me a better tutor, and building relationships with other Honors students and professors in an academic setting has made me a better mentor. I like to joke that I’m going to be involved with SBU until I die, but I sincerely think that’s the truth – they’re my family now too, just as much as Honors is.