The New Campus

Debbie Hartman



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When I found out we were moving from Park Square to the Harbor Campus in Dorchester I was fearful. I had enjoyed Park Square, both Boston Common and the Garden, the frog pond and good cheap restaurants. Erewhon was the first place I ate sushi with a new UMass friend, the Spa was across the street.

The new campus was beautiful, and quiet and modern! I loved it. I used to sit out on the porch looking out to the bay, nibbling on felafel. I'd sit and write in my journal of all my new college experiences or study my German text. I enjoyed my classes with Sandra Schuman and took all of them. I really learned to love writing from Sandra and that led to my career as a writing teacher and part time journalist.

When people had to study for a test or rest before going home to work, we'd go up to the library and sleep on the colorful orange and blue cubed couches. I learned to play racquetball and spent time in the courts. I met a group of UMass friends who turned me on to disco dancing and baking bread and growing sprouts. One of the most fun classes was a science class called Science for Survival where we learned to make vegetarian nut loaves and make sourdough bread with "the mother", we learned about perfect proteins and using vitamin C to ward off colds per Adele Davis' Diet For A Small Plant. My years at UMass/Boston altered my life in so many ways that I became a person that I never knew was inside of me. I am still proud to wear the badge of "First College Graduate" in my family. I tell that story every year to my high school students and encourage them to seek that dream that I did so many decades ago.