Knowing the importance of introducing middle school students to post-secondary education, Niagara University's Levesque Institute for Civic Engagement hosted students from two schools in the Niagara Falls City School District on campus Nov. 9, 2023.
The seventh and eighth grade participants from the Critical Literacy Program at LaSalle and Gaskill preparatory schools experienced areas of campus life other than the classroom as a way of showing all that a campus like NU has to offer. They started their tour with a visit to Dwyer Arena, where they were able to skate with members of the men’s hockey team. For the majority of the participants, this was their first time skating.
“It was wonderful to see their willingness to try something new and to watch them develop confidence while they were skating,” said Karen Kwandrans, associate vice president of strategic and external relations at Niagara University.
The group also visited the Castellani Art Museum, where they viewed an exhibition on the biological regionalism of the Niagara River by Alberto Rey. Students were engaged in the presentation and inquired about the history of Robert Moses, the water diversion at Niagara Falls, and the environmental impact of industrialism. Lunch in the on-campus Russell Salvatore Dining Commons topped off the visit.
“The students were treated so well by everyone involved in the day and really benefitted from the social interaction with college students,” said teacher Sarah Sperry. “The Critical Literacy students will be back on campus in the spring!”