Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Exploring Breukelen

By: Tishara Reid

        On the weekend of October 4-6th I had the pleasure of attending Phi Theta Kappa’s New York Region Honors in Action Conference. The event was held at Kingsborough Community College. It was indeed a pleasure to be in an atmosphere with students that shared similar goals and aspirations as myself.
        The most impressive segment of the conference for me was the speech by Historian Ron Schweiger. His main session was entitled “It’s a small world: Competition and Geography”. Schweiger is the official Historian of the Borough of Brooklyn. Schweiger was appointed to that position by the current Borough President of Brooklyn. Out of all the presenters at the conference, I noticed that Schweiger was the only keynote speaker opted to use the “old school” approach of hand written charts rather than using a typical PowerPoint presentation. I found it very interesting that he was still able to captivate his audience.
       In this session Schweiger gave us a detailed history of “Breuklen” and the surrounding areas back in the 1800’s that are today known as Brooklyn or King’s County. Being that I am not a native New Yorker, the entire lecture was absolutely fascinating. I also learned about the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge. For me, what was most remarkable was learning about Emily Roebling who became skilled at mathematics and became the overseer of the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge when her husband fell ill. At that time, this was a great achievement, especially since she was a woman!
          There are countless other things that I learned at this conference, but overall it was an awesome and enriching experience.

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