Final Mapping Commonplace: UNCF and Teach For America

There are many businesses and establishments held within the Progression Place building. The Progression Place has created a new environment where many businesses come together in one building in order to have a breading ground for success. There have been many new and old businesses in this building that have been either just been established in the building or have had their business for some time. What the Progression Place is attempting to do is help those in this community and have more opportunities available for the people there. It is known that 7th and S street has been a place where there was a shooting that lead to the death of 3 people, but there is more to this community than that. The Progression Place was not always like this, there was a before.  That before was not always great or positive but that before is in the past. There is a new and bright future for this area and this building is contributing to that. There is a part of the building holds a UNCF sign outside. The UNCF on the sign outside of this part of the building is for the organization called United Negro College Fund. This organization has the motto that “A mind is a terrible thing to waste” (Our Mission). 

The main issue that the UNCF is trying to help with is giving every American an opportunity of receiving the same level education. Some might believe that there is equal opportunity for all but that is not the case and the UNCF is aware of that. Many people who are either African American or poor people, do not receive the same favorable circumstances as all other Americans are given. Poor people and some African Americans are located in built environments where there are not many successful people therefore causing them to not believe in themselves. For there to be a majority of folks around the community that are doing poorly financially, the children growing up in these areas might believe they are not capable of accomplishing much either. Not only are children growing up with this belief but they are also not aware of given options around them that could help them to be more successful in the future. There is a large amount of people that are unable to receive a higher education level than others because of their financial status. Not only are people unable to receive higher degrees, they are looked at as people who should not or cannot. Some people do not believe in themselves to be able to get a college degree because of how the people around them do not receive them. Normally, when the people around you are used to a structure the people growing up in this built environment tend to stick to the same course. There are always a few people who try to achieve bigger dreams than the people around them but the UNCF tries to help with making those dreams possible. UNCF also encouraged young people to reach for their dreams and supplies them with certain opportunities that they would not have without UNCF.

The UNCF wants to level the playing field and give everyone equal opportunity to achieve their goals in life. For the UNCF, they truly want the children in this area to do better and to escape the path that they are supposedly destined to follow. The UNCF wants to “ensure more students are college-ready, enroll in college and persist to graduation” (Our Mission). If there are more children growing up in this area and receiving their college degrees, there will be more help and hope for the generations that follow them. Having children finishing high school and going to good colleges after become a regular occurrence in this area would be a great change to what this built environment has created over the years. The UNCF wants to figure out a plan for there to be more college students and high school graduates. But in order for there to be more college students that are African American or poor, there needs to be more help for there to be an even amount of opportunity for all races to get into college and finish high school. This is where UNCF comes in to do their part in making opportunity equal for everyone in America. What the UNCF does to ensure this is by “creating a college-going culture in the African American community” (Our Mission). If there is this “college-going culture” then college will be looked at as less of a jump from high school and more as a next step in a successful future that everyone partakes in. The programs that they have established have a home base in Progression Place and help the surrounding community. Since the UNCF is located in the Progression Place there is a more direct way for the children in this community to gain that help and access to a better life and a more successful future.

Also in Progression Place, there is the organization, Teach For America. This company is similar to the UNCF because they have similar goals in helping the growing children within this built environment created for them. What Teach For America is based on is, “giving all students access to an excellent education” (Our Impact). For the past 26 years, there has been this organization. While it is not new to doing what they must it is new to this area because of the Progression Place. Since the Progression Place is located here, there has been a ton of organizations established closer to this area that what to help to make the community a better place. Teach For America has tried to help those in need receive a better education than expected from their built environment. For there to be 3,400 incoming corps members in 2016 the organization must be achieving great progress with these students (Graph Below). Graduating seniors, graduate students, and professionals have all been on the rise since this organization was created. The Progression Place is a breeding ground for these types of organizations. The Progression Place allows there to be all different kinds of organizations in this moderately poor neighborhood and all these organizations are trying to help the circumstances that are being faced by the people within this built environment.

The reason why I chose these two as my commonplaces is because they show the true reason and purpose of the Progression Place. For the Progression Place to have at least two organizations created based on helping those around them, there is major benefit to the community where this building is located. These organizations and many others will end up breading more successful children and a brighter future for many of these children that they were not able to fathom before now. There is a special community bond that the Progression Place has created because of how the businesses inside the building are trying to help those that are in need in the nearby community. There has been a built environment where many of these people fail in being a success because of their circumstances but the Progression Place is trying to change that. The Progression Place was just recently created and is already making such headway within this community. This building truly has lived up to the expectations held for it and the name it has been titled as. There has been an immense amount of progress in the education system for the students in the nearby schools and that is because of the Progression Place’s location and the diligent people that work in the building. There has always been a need for better education in these areas but not many have stepped up to the plate to make that actually happen.

Work Cited

Unknown. Our Impact. Teach for America.

Unknown. Our Mission. United Negro College Fund.

Northwest Settlement House In Depth

Northwest Settlement House daycare. Urban Moms and Dads. Web. 9 Apr. 2017.

DC Urban Moms and Dads gives great feedback on all of the current happenings that are occurring within the community. These are real people giving their real opinions untainted and with no bounds.

Dad reading a book to his son

There is a special candid aspect to these types of webpages when people are able to give their opinion. The website allows there to be no bias or reasons for there to be any challenges people need to face by having the authors all be anonymous. The people who comment on these posts believe what they believe and are not influenced by anyone to say something on the website that they do not personally think is true. Some of the people have kind words about the place and others not as much but regardless they are their opinions simple, cut, and dry.

By having these opinions there can be more depth and discussion for my paper. There are going to be more perspectives for my paper rather than just what the people who work at the Northwest Settlement House believe and more than what I think about the place after research. I see plenty of potential within this website to give my paper a different outlook and mindset. This website will give my paper more of a way for the community’s actual opinion to be apart of something rather than just businesses. There will be more of an opinion for the paper instead of just facts which will help build up my point more and give more first  hand evidence.

“Northwest Settlement House Cdc | WASHINGTON DC Licensed Child Development Center”. N. p., 2017. Web. 9 Apr. 2017.

This source gives more specific details in what the Northwest Settlement House and how they typically run day to day activities. There are more technicalities described about the Development Day Care program that is provided within the Northwest Settlement House. The source states that the program administers stimulating and nurturing child care. The ages of the children that they help are from 6 weeks to 5 years old. The Northwest Settlement House has the preschool program that is “accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children” which is an absolutely credible organization. Also the hours for the Northwest Settlement House are Mondays – Thursdays from 7 am to 6 pm and then Fridays from 7 am – 5:30 pm. These hours are extremely accessible for the parents and families that are in the nearby area.

The Northwest Settlement House has their way of how they manage their system and this source helps show how the they are helpful to the community that they are located within. The Northwest Settlement House by having such long hours is definitely beneficial for parents who have to work early in the morning at 7 am to those parents that work till late like 6 pm. Most of the parents within this area probably work long hours therefore by the Northwest Settlement House being available in such a fashion is extremely useful and valuable for the parents and families. Also with the Northwest Settlement House being able to watch children from 6 weeks to 5 years old that also gives the parents and families more leeway with their children. If the children can be watched from such a young age then the parents have to opportunity to work and do other activities without having to worry about their young child.

Uprising Muffin Company

This picture is based within the cafe that was established within my assigned site. This cafe is named Uprising which in itself is captivating and electrifying to the area that the establishment is located in. The area where this cafe is, is a part of a community that has only been “upgrading” and trying to better for itself. The bookshelf that is in the window of the cafe is a statement piece. It gives the cafe a certain amount of a presence. The people walking by can see the bookshelf an attempt to see what the cafe is all about.

Apartments With Style

This picture is taken from the outside of the apartment buildings that are above the cafe on the intersection that is my site. I was able to capture some of the inside because of how bright it was outside. In this picture it is clear that this building is newly created and renovated. The rooms look perfectly modernized and current to the styles of architecture that are presently occurring. Also within one of the rooms that is a bike present which clues to that the person who lives there most likely is not far from the main places he/she must reach.

Art Work That You Can Feel

In this picture there are two other pictures. These pictures represent basically the city that the cafe is located within. The top picture is of a bridge and large buildings and the colors are so vibrant and prevalent. But there is also a dark side with lots of black and other details with plenty of black within it. The brush strokes are slightly rough and unfinished similar to the city that the cafe is in. Washington DC is not finished it is still developing and changing each and everyday. The bottom painting has more up close buildings that show “Log Cabin” which is a liquor store on the other corner next to the cafe.

Keep Ya Head Up

Within the cafe that is near my site there were plenty of inspirational quotes on the wall. In this picture there were at least 6 of them. The quotes of this wall not only give inspiration but also make the cafe look more cool, up and coming and urban-like. Since the cafe has such details there is more of an attraction to go there. Especially since they have comfy chairs and a table to grab lunch with a friend. They also placed there logo on the wall which almost blends in but they definitely integrate themselves.

Sources for Built Environment, 7th Street NW DC

“1500 Block of 7th Street NW about to ‘Pop.’” 1500 Block of 7th Street NW about to “Pop” ~ BadWolf DC, November 5, 2013.

In this article, the argument is that there is a dramatic transformation occurring on 7th street. I know this because throughout the article the unknown author lists out all of the differences that will be happening on 7th street and how much of an intense change there is going to be in the next upcoming years. One of the changes is that the current laundromat will be turned into a coffee shop. This coffee shop will also have coffee roasted on site which will make the coffee for fresh and satisfying. The change from a laundromat to a coffee shop signifies the difference in the neighborhood. The laundromat is typically used by people who do not have nor can afford their own washing machine and now that is being replaced with a new coffee shop. Coffee shops typically represent more of a leisurely activity rather than washing your clothes at a laundromat because you cannot afford to do it at your own house or apartment.

I chose this article because it gives more of an insite on what exactly the dynamic of the change that is happening to 7th street is. This article creates more contextual evidence which leads to more of an understanding on what 7th street’s transformation is like. 7th street has it’s own reputation that has been created but there is much more happening that many people would have never expected. The article is able to highlight exactly what parts are being replaced. With the article saying what is being replaced with what there are clues as to how 7th street is being transformed. When people look into what kind of person, or people use those facilities or go to those businesses it shows the dynamic of those who live in that area. When there are places being turned into more upscale and high end stores then there are other clues shown as to is starting to move into this area and how it is affecting the neighborhood.

“SHAW: Proposed Development on 7th Street NW – Residential and Retail.” SHAW, March 7, 2016.

In this article, the argument being established is that 7th street is having new plans to be redeveloped. I know this because 7th street has a building in which there will be an addition of a penthouse and of another floor. This transformation will encourage different inquiries to enter the premises of this area that would probably have not considered this area in the past. This area has begun a change that will alter the dynamics of the current people and places near by it. There are also plans on “protection of historic buildings in the lot” which will be able to occur based off of the Board of Zoning Adjustment or the BZA. The Board of Zoning Adjustment also has created inquiries to have 8 residential units and 10,221 square ft of retail. The result of this will be monumental because it will end up causing some drastic adjustments in the near future.

I chose this because there is clear connection on how the article shows prime examples on how the area is changing and becoming a new space. The area is becoming a territory that is built for people that do not originally live there. There has not been much of a change until recently but because of all the new infrastructure and other alterations the change is occurring faster and faster. There is a complete transformation occurring and not everyone is noticing it as much as they should. People that have always lived there are witnessing something incredibly different to what they have been used to for so long. There will be a clear shift and it is happening at a speedy pace and is only growing from here.