by Frank Cervarich, corps member on the CSX Team serving at Malcolm X Elementary School
Give a year. Change the world.
5. The nation’s capital. I will never get over the fact that I can see the Washington Monument from the fourth floor of my school. I can walk to a monument at any time of the day or night, or to go to any Smithsonian museum for free. People travel from all over the world to see something that is accessible to any CYDC corps member on a daily basis.
4. The culture. The 9:30 Club is one of the best spots in the country to see artists, no matter what kind of music you like. DC is also an extremely young city, with vibrant neighborhoods such as H St, U St, Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, and Chinatown. Not to mention the social sport leagues: kickball and bocce and dodgeball and softball and…well, you get it.
3. The diversity. According to the 2010 Census, DC has a 50% African-American, 38% white, 9% Latino, and 3% Asian population. Every sector of our population is represented here. Plus, because Washington is the seat of the federal government, you can meet people from countries that you might know nothing about – for example, DC has one of the biggest Ethiopian/Eritrean populations in the US.
2. Food. I love food. DC is a food-lover’s culinary dream. It is extremely varied, to boot. On any given day, you could get a meal from world-famous chefs, such as Michel Richard or Jose Andres, or you could get an unbelievable meal from a food truck on the street. For dessert, DC boasts some of the most delicious cupcakes ever baked by man!
1. DC needs our help. DC is infamous for its public education. Only four out of ten students in Ward 7 and 8 (the areas of the city where most Corps Members serve) will graduate high school. Of those who graduate, only one in twenty will obtain a college degree within five years of high school graduation. This is a national tragedy.
City Year DC gives you an opportunity to positively impact the lives of children and to help build a better community in DC. It gives you the ability to engage with people from all walks of life.