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Alina, Student

365体育备用网址Alina is a Summer Academy student from Vancouver, Canada and took our course 'Inside the UN/Journalism/Law.'

Why did you decide to study at The School of The New York Times?

365体育备用网址I chose to study at The School of The New York Times not only out of pure interest for the classes offered, but to experience a community of writers and artists with the same passions as me. For hundreds of students to come from around the world to study in New York together is so unique and inspiring, which is truly what made the school so appealing to me.

Which course did you take and why?

I took Inside the UN/Journalism/Law at the New York campus because I found that it was a perfect combination to represent how the world is fighting daily global issues. From awareness to advocacy through journalism and the press, the power of the United Nations and the structure of the law; they all play such key roles in how society continues to persevere and grow everyday.

If you had to name one thing that you learned from your time here, what is that one takeaway that will stay with you?

Reflecting back to my time at the school, one thing that I learned is to never believe in international barriers. Whether it be for race, religion or ethnicity, they don’t exist when it comes to friendship. Although I always knew the importance of acceptance and diversity, I never realized how little any physical difference mattered until I experienced what it was like to sit in a room full of people from various⁠— and even contrasting⁠— nations to learn and create something for the bigger picture of the world. I will also take away the feeling of making good conversation with students from different time zones in a place that celebrates looking into the future of complete equality; New York City and, more specifically, The New York Times. I will keep that feeling with me because I can’t wait to run into it again and remember my worldwide and now lifelong friends I had the opportunity of meeting.

What was your favorite site visit?

365体育备用网址My favourite site visit was early in the journalism portion of my course to Corona, Queens (near Jackson Heights). I love how New York feels like the most crowded small city spread out across the entire world. In Corona, I instantly felt immersed by the latin culture and Spanish language. I am grateful that our teacher, Liz Robbins, took us to this community filled with undocumented immigrants and Hispanic people from all over Latin America who we had the chance to interview and connect with. We also got the opportunity to ask Catalina Cruz, the local assembly member, questions on the legal and political scenes of the community. It was incredible to be able to go to a neighborhood one wouldn’t even think of going to as a tourist, and I will never forget my taste of latin culture and first-person view of the immigration crisis in New York.

Who was the most memorable guest speaker?

Personally, I found the most memorable guest speaker to be Julia Gilhart, who was part of the panel at the speaker series on sustainable fashion. I had been so excited for this panel since receiving the weekly schedule and was extremely happy to hear it surrounded the fashion community. Although I had never heard of her before, Julia’s beautiful dress instantly captured my attention and I loved following what she had to say on the fashion industry that evening. As a well-respected member of the fashion community, and having worked with larger companies, I found it inspiring to hear her story and when she noticed the fashion world colliding with the climate crisis. I learned from her realness in approaching the issues in the fashion community and her new efforts to continue to be an active member but to be aware of the consequences of fast fashion and the importance of sustainability.

What were your faculty like?

I was so impressed with the faculty in my program, I thought most would have been journalists who had covered stories related to the law or the UN but they were all real people who had experienced work in both areas. Even if I knew them for only a short period of time, the connection and trust I built with these teachers is unimaginable. Unlike regular school, it’s so clear these instructors are experts in their field and not only enjoy teaching but love to inspire young and creative minds. It made the course much more active and my peers and I loved participating and asking endless amounts of questions which they always had answers to.

What does The New York Times mean to you?

365体育备用网址For me, The New York Times is like a guardian for the world. They take care of international communities from around the world and define freedom of the press. The New York Times has the sense of watching what you are doing, looking over one’s shoulder and urging the population to define their own moral compass of what’s right and wrong in the world today. The New York Times to me is like a parent to the world, fighting for what’s best but also letting you learn on your own.

What does it mean to you to study in New York City?

I never thought I would want to return to a city that was still in until I went to New York. Sitting in LaGuardia, I already missed the busy streets and noisy walkways because there is nowhere in the world like New York City. Portrayed in the movies as a dream, I was ready to relive the optimism and ambition in the city just like Audrey Hepburn or Serena Van der Woodsen from Gossip Girl and even Rachel Berry from Glee. Being able to work in such a fast-paced and alive city only fueled my drive to succeed and I am forever thankful to have studied in New York this year, and hopefully return next year.

What do you think you want to be when you grow up?

365体育备用网址While applying for this course, I was most interested in international law and careers in the United Nations. I was excited to learn about my dream job and ask questions to my instructor on their journey to success. It wasn’t until I had the opportunity to ask these questions and learn more about the subjects that I realized it wasn’t the right fit for me. Surprisingly, the journalism aspect of the course, a career that never truly interested me before, became so appealing to me. I love to write, I love to stand up for what I believe in to make a difference, and I discovered journalism falls into those categories as well. Even then, a personal reflection regarding what I want to have when I grow up is a voice, which was the common factor in all three career areas (UN, Law, Journalism) we explored in the course. I hope next year I can try a new class like fashion and photography, to make myself heard in a different way. Although the law or the UN may not be my top career choice anymore, I am still grateful for the venues of careers and life interests I got to see throughout my course.

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