Scholar Dispels Public Housing Myths
For a final project in her journalism class at The City College of New York, NYCHA resident Dalia Saavedra decided to focus on the place she calls home. Ms. Saavedra wrote an article that features interviews with residents about how living in NYCHA developments has helped them, while also acknowledging the Authority’s funding issues and media coverage over the last year.
Ms. Saavedra lives at McKinley Houses in the Bronx and was one of 23 students to be awarded the NYCHA-CUNY Scholarship in 2018. She double majors in English and journalism, and is currently an intern at Telemundo 47.
One of the people she interviewed on camera for her final project is Wyckoff Gardens resident Brandon Gracia, a fellow 2018 NYCHA-CUNY Scholar.
From Ms. Saavedra’s article:
Brandon Gracia, NYCHA-CUNY Scholarship recipient, lives in Wyckoff Gardens in Brooklyn and has lived there his whole life. He believes NYCHA has shaped him to be the man he is today. However, the public's perception on public housing saddens him. People often think they’re full of drugs, drama, and crime, but that’s not always the case. ‘There are lots of hardworking families and honest people who make their living outside of the hood and I am one of them,’ he says.
Gracia studies advertising and public relations at The City College of New York, and outside of school he produces music and blogs. In the future he plans on creating an organization called Concrete Youth, a place where youth, no matter their race, gender, or social class, with a passion for music, writing, and other creative arts, can come together to bond and create something phenomenal—this would be his way of paying it forward.
Watch the full interview with Mr. Gracia here.