Category Archives: volunteering

Ocean Photography: Inspiring Conservation

Hello there!

Two days ago I got to attend a short conference lead by the acclaimed photographer Keith Ellenbogen in the Katie Murphy Amphitheater. The presentation was titled Ocean Photography: Inspiring Conservation. Basically Keith Ellenbogen, showcased his incredible images and talked to us about his various experiences and stories on his environmental and marine science expeditions. Going into this I didn’t really know what to expect, since I’m not much of an ocean lover or really at all interested in this particular subject. But seeing his photography and the way he was so passionate about this topic and what he did, struck me. The images he showed us were absolutely incredible, I never realized how much patience and thought goes into snapping an image (of an ocean creature/wildlife). He talked about how his images serve bigger purposes than just a simple image of an oceanic creature. It is really an art form to itself. I also never realized how much innovation goes into the art of photography. Everything is calculated and planned ahead (at least in his case). He will sometimes spend months and months in one spot, just to get the perfect shot, which might never happen. But that does not seem to bother him.

This made me realize that I shouldn’t restrict myself to subjects that only interest me, because like in this example it opened my eyes to a completely new world I was completely ignorant of, and showed me a new found love and interest. It also made me realize how little I know of my own planet, and has encouraged me to educate myself more. Sometimes going out of your comfort zones, can actually be beneficial and allow you to discover different sides of yourself you wouldn’t otherwise.

Hope this inspired a few of you!:)



How do I fit in and make as an International Student?!

Hello my fellow international students!

As an international students myself, I found it quite hard to make friends and feel integrated when I started studying at FIT. American students intimidated me, they spoke so fast and I was afraid that I wouldn’t understand them or they wouldn’t understand me. Every time I met a student from abroad or someone that spoke the same language, it felt like such a relief, like I wasn’t the only one facing these crazy fears. But as an introvert I found it quite hard to go up to people or force myself to start a conversation. Here are some tips that helped me throughout the semesters.

Interacting with students in your major. I know what most of you think… But don’t let it intimidate you, most students (even American) feel exactly the same way. Don’t be afraid to talk to them, at least you have something in common that you can talk about, which won’t make you feel going in completely blind. Group projects too are a great way to make friends and start becoming more social, I know they can be annoying, but they give you more time to talk with them. That’s how I met my best friend at FIT.

Become part a group. Clubs are a great way to make friends, feeling integrated and part of a team. You see the same people every week at the meetings, but also outside during events, fundraising etc. What’s great about clubs, is that you are with people who have the same interests you do, so it will make it so much easier to find similar interests and things to talk about.  What I found really helped me was being accepted in the presidential scholars program, it was a much smaller group of people, which made it less intimidating to go up to people. Also most of us were there for the same reasons. Something I really liked about the honors program was that I didn’t only have one class with them, but I would see them on a regular basis at the colloquiums and various event throughout the semesters, which made us get closer without even trying.

Attend events. FIT has so many social events throughout the semesters, just go to one and see how you feel. It won’t hurt trying. That’s how I met my two first American friends at FIT, was during one of the orientation parties.

Community Service. Sign up for community service. You won’t be around only FIT students, but other people from different schools etc. It’s a nice way to meet people, not just from FIT.

Internships. They not only look great on your resume, but they’re a great way to make friends. Most of the friends I made through my internships are older, but I in a way enjoy it much more, because we have more adult conversations and I feel challenged (in a good way).

Campus Jobs. It’s a cool way to make extra money, but also friends! I loved working as a tutor, because without knowing, there are a lot of international students that worked there, so it felt like a very mixed and diverse group of people, not making it so intimidating.

But remember to be yourself, don’t ever try to be someone you are not!



Great Volunteer Spots in the City

Hello there!

Always looking out for new finds in the city (for free), I came across a list of volunteer spots I’ve never heard of before, which spiked my curiosity. For the past three years I’ve volunteered at a number of organizations from Food Kitchens to various social events. However I’ve never really heard or seen around FIT (or city) organizations revolving around art. If you are an art lover and want to help an Arts Organization below is a long list of various non-profit organizations in the city. I’ve never realized how many there were until now, they range from books, music, painting etc. I’ve linked all the websites so you can go on them and contact the organizations for more information or volunteer work. 

The Art Therapy Project 

Artists Talk on Art

Brooklyn Children’s Museum


The Center for Book Arts


Delivering Good, Inc. 

The Field



Materials for the Arts 

Museum of Chinese in America 

No Longer Empty 

Residency Unlimited

Sing for Hope

Studio in a School

Time In Children’s Arts



Want To Volunteer?!

Hello there!

It came to my attention, that a lot of students (especially new students), weren’t aware of our Student Volunteer Community Services (SVCS). Many think it’s to volunteer for food bank, pet shelters etc. But it offers much more volunteer opportunities than that. For example if you wanted to volunteer for NYFW, SVCS are the ones that take care of it. If you haven’t signed up to SVCS, you will never be informed about various dates and opportunities to volunteer for really great events. It costs you absolutely nothing to fill out the SVCS Personal Information Form and like that you will be sure to be informed by email about any events that are offered to FIT students. Last year for example students could sign up to volunteer and be part of Kanye West’s fashion show!

Don’t wait and sign up now!



Reminder for International Students

Hey there!

If you’re an international student (like myself) and are planning on having a non-credit internship next semester (Spring 2017), I would suggest you apply now for an OPT approval. It takes about 90 days to process, so make sure you do it before you leave for Winter break.

The first thing you’re going to want to do is go to the international student services on the first floor of the B (B103) building and request the form to apply for an OPT. Next you’re going to have to take two passport pictures and make a check for 380$ to the USCIS. Once you’ve done this, make sure you schedule an appointment with Erika Rohrback. I would almost suggest scheduling it, once you’ve gotten the form to fill out, just to make sure you get a meeting with her (since she is very busy). If she tells you everything looks good, you just have to wait for them to approve your OPT and you’re good start working!

Good Luck!