Reflecting back on orientation and the tour of Rochester, how have your assumptions/preconceived notions of Rochester been challenged since your service has started?
Personally, I was excited to be going on the tour of Rochester. I have grown up and lived in Rochester all 21 years of my life. You would think that I’m an expert on this city, right? Wrong. I’m far from it. I grew up in Hilton, a rural town up north, just passed Spencerport. Even when I went to college, I moved 25 minutes away to Chili, a suburb or Rochester, and I lived there for my 3 years of college. Besides going to the Public Market a couple of times, going to work with my mom at Xerox here and there and going to High Falls once, I really have not seen the city of Rochester as much as I could have.
Before going on this tour I can’t recall ever having a major assumption or a preconceived notion that changed my view of Rochester, although I’m sure there haven been some. Growing up, I remember my parents telling me about “safe” and “unsafe” places, but that is about it.
While we were on the tour a learned that Rochester used to have a revolving restaurant on East Main Street called “Changing Scene”. Of the whole tour, that is was fascinated me the most. Still to this day I tell people and ask them if they knew that Rochester used to have a revolving restaurant, similar to the restaurant “360” in the CN Tower in Toronto. The movie that we watched showed me that Rochester used to have so much life to it, not to say that it doesn’t today, but it seemed more exciting to live in Rochester 30-40 years ago. My challenge from the tour is to not look at Rochester with hopelessness, but to think of situations in a more positive aspect. That things (poverty, homelessness, unemployment) can only get better from here.