Monday, July 15, 2013

Letter From An ECC Student: Make Downtown Stronger & More Accessible!

This was sent to us days ago by a concerned ECC student. We need you to come out and support us TOMORROW at 1pm. (see LINK for details!) 

To Whom It Concerns,

I come to you as a current student at ECC-City Campus. I am also a resident in the city of Buffalo. It truly sickens me to learn of the recent proposal to build a Health Sciences building at Amherst-North Campus, and to focus Buffalo-City Campus on Work Force Development and remedial learning for inner-city youth. Over 50% of ECC students are residents in the City of Buffalo and have to commute to North Campus if they wish to partake in degree programs that can transfer to four year schools. We have the benefit of a campus downtown that is walking distance from the surrounding medical facilities and also surrounded by the Buffalo Transit System, serving a number of students that are without transportation.

I find it extremely discriminatory to take away from the students in the city that are eager to learn and build a future for themselves just because of limited means or simple geography. Why should students downtown have to travel over an hour by bus to Amherst-North Campus when we have a huge facility at arm’s length right here? I myself was delighted to learn that ECC had a campus right downtown that I could access just minutes away from my residence. I decided to go back to school in 2012 and if it wasn’t for the close proximity of Buffalo-City Campus and their evening classes I wouldn’t have been able to do it. How is Buffalo ever going to be the thriving metropolis that it was in years past if we keep removing educational opportunities and placing them in upper-class suburban neighborhoods, out of reach to those in more densely populated parts of the city? We should be promoting the expansion of City-Campus so that more residents do not have to settle for minimum wage jobs that barely support one person, let alone a family.

So many are eager to go to school but find themselves up against a wall. Let’s knock down that wall. Let’s give the residents of Buffalo a fighting chance to live the life they have imagined. We have the power to change lives and to make a difference. The root of success starts with education. Don’t slam the door in our faces; open it and let us through.

Thank you,
Erin Vaccarello
ECC-City Campus Student
Buffalo Resident

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