As I sat down with Derek Lumpkins and Marisa Luse of Northeastern Crossing my burning question was “What is Northeastern Crossing about and who is it for”? regarding Boston’s communities and its residents. In the end it’s about the geography surrounding the Northeastern Crossing space. This space was created out of Northeastern University’s Institutional Master Plan in 2011 that brought together the in relation to the university city, university and surrounding communities. These communities felt unwelcome and found it hard to maneuver the campus grounds among other issues. Northeastern Crossing became the face and front door for the off campus surrounding communities.
Marisa Luse, Engagement Coordinator, and an alumna kno ws the ins and outs of the university. She is the internal connection for the space for not only faculty but students and staff alike to be aware of the space for programming and connecting with the community. Marisa spoke of future community programs such as Women of Color who are in academia for professors or PhDs to have space to share practices, learn new skills, an expand the network and collaboration of student and staff participation. This programing is in the planning stages for the future.
I have attended and participated in a few events in the space starting with their Grand Opening on September 28th 2015. I have attended events as well as used the space myself and would like to see more community programs to help neighborhood residents become aware of the Northeastern Crossing space. I’d like for Roxbury/Lo Dorchester communities to be welcome to have use of the space. NEU sits and always has sat in the middle of the Roxbury community and I hope to see more usage by residents. I have found through talking to community folks many are not even aware of Northeastern Crossing’s existence. I will spread the word that this space exists and for the communities to come see and inquire about its usage. In the meantime come and take some Afro Yoga classes that are held twice a month in this space. I’ve done it and have a great time even if I’m a bit sore at the end. Also once a month they feature a new artist complete with a reception. If you’re an artist and want your work featured in the space, artists are featured every six months. Northeastern Crossing hours are 9 am to 5pm Monday to Friday at 1175 Tremont St., Roxbury, MA 02120.