Facing barriers in transportation

By Catherine Dahlberg

If you are like me, someone not born and raised in Minnesota, then you may understand why I call it a barrier getting around in the Twin Cities.

I moved to the Twin Cities in 2015, without any knowledge of the roads around. In February, 2016, I took public transport to a training. I got lost on U of M campus. It took me almost a whole hour navigating the area before arriving at the transfer stop, only to find out that I had missed the last bus serving that station. Then I had to take an alternative route to the training. I was late for that, of course. The whole experience was terrible for me.

To describe that experience in full, I wrote this blog in an imaginative TV setting:

An education on health equity and transit

By Jocelyn LeungCommunity Engagement Program Associate, Nexus Community Partners

I joined AmeriCorps VISTA during a real turning point in my life. I had been in 3 graduate programs for the past 6 years. One of them I had the foresight to leave when I knew it wasn’t right; another I stayed for too long.  Making the transition from a perpetual student to a member of the workforce was hard, and my confidence was low after months of unsuccessful job-searching. I’m very grateful to now be serving at Nexus Community Partners as the Community Engagement Program Associate through VISTA.

The goal of ‘making poverty history’ can be daunting and abstract, but the work I share with community based organizations in making sure that community members have a say in how the light rail can help them lead healthier and better lives is very real and moving. These voices come from communities of color, immigrants and refugees, migrants, people living with disabilities, low-income communities, and other transit dependent populations. It’s our responsibility to make sure their voices change policies and light rail development throughout a long-term public works project. 

Following the Blue Line Coalition

By Giselle Efon, Community Engagement Program AssociateNexus Community Partners

My VISTA year has been completely amazing so far. The fact that I was even able to get this position was very surprising to me. I can still remember the day of my interview, how I left the Nexus office and I randomly started running away because I thought I did very poorly on the interview. I also called my sister over the phone to complain to her about how I will not get the position. I was surprised to get a phone call that same day, at 2pm regarding how I got the position.

It was very strange to leave a college job setting to a real professional setting. Honestly, I must admit that this is the most comfortable environment I have been in out of my comfort zone. Most people in the nonprofit setting are mostly very nice, polite, friendly, respectful, outspoken, and passionate about what they do. In college, I never saw people like this before.