Tag Archives: Pres Scholars

Notes From the 6 Train: Let’s Go!

887062_4549452582846_1740443383_o (At my birthday party in South Korea)

This past Wednedsay I went (by went, I mean was obligated to attend, lol) to International Night hosted by the Presidental’s Honor’s Program. Buuut, I am so glad that I did! I learned about a number of interesting programs/ opportunities possible for FIT Students.

At the colloquium we heard from a number of scholars who studied abroad within the last school year (winter, summer, as well as the traditional school year). One of which was a fellow FIT blogger Emily (shout out!). We heard their travel stories and saw their beautiful photos from Paris, India, Florence, Italy, in addition to a host of other countries.A topic that was discussed in great detail, and rightly so, was how to fund a trip abroad. I find this to be student’s primary obstacle in regards to studying abroad, so I’m glad it was covered so thoroughly.

tumblr_mkry8giBdC1s6wt51o2_1280 ( Walking to the Buddha)

Funding for study abroad is the same as studying domestically (financial aid, PELL grant, out of school grants or loans), but there are also a number of scholarship offered only for studying abroad. The scholarships to study abroad at FIT are listed below:

Global Scholar Award Program, the amount varies depending on the semester you plan to travel, NY residency, etc. (Summer 2015, Fall 2015 and Spring 2016). The deadline is Dec. 1

If you are/ are considering in the Presidental Scholar’s Program you are eligable for the scholarhsips listed below:

Jerome L. Greene Foundation International Studies Fund (up to $10,000)

Jodi Tilton Memorial Scholarship for Summer Study Abroad ($2000)

Henry Wolf Presidential Scholars Summer Abroad Scholarship (up to $5000).

These are in addition to the annual FIT scholarships and can also be applied to study abroad. This also does not mean that your search for funding stops here, there are countless scholarships offered outside of FIT.

In addition to studying abroad, representative from The Peace Corps & The Fulbright Program came to speak.

The Peace Corps is an organization that sends volunteers to travel overseas to make differences in the lives of real people. They program was established by President John F. Kennedy in 1961. Sine the creation of the program over 215,000 Americans joined the Peace Corps and served in 139 countries.

tumblr_mkry8giBdC1s6wt51o5_500 (!)

“The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English Teaching Assistant Programs. A candidate will submit a Statement of Grant Purpose defining activities to take place during one academic year in a participating country outside the U.S.”

There are two different components of Fulbright. Anyone who chooses to apply can submit an application for the study/research grants or to teach English abroad. This program is interesting to me personally because it gives more freedom to the applicant. As long as your study/ research programs fits into certain parimeters, you can actualize your vision in a foregin country. Nearly anyone can apply; college graduates, artists, writers, scientists, etc., basically anyone with an imagination and drive.

There are so many ways to get out and explore the world! As an avid traveler myself, I know life altering traveling can be. With so many opportunities, there’s no reason you shouldn’t take advantage!

(FIT Study Abroad Scholarships) http://www.fitnyc.edu/12226.asp

(Peace Corps) http://www.peacecorps.gov/about/

(Fulbright Program) http://us.fulbrightonline.org/about

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.

You Gotta Get Dirty to Be Beautiful

“New York is so dirty and the people who live there are mean!”

Ok, I’m not going to get into perception vs. reality, and how perception can affect reality, but i have to admit, we are a dirty bunch. I don’t think it is as bad as most people believe, but you can see overflowing garbage cans on street corners, the subway tracks are treated like one huge dumpster, and people don’t seem to have any problem with spitting anywhere and everywhere.

This is no excuse. If you ride the subway regularly, I’m sure you have heard the announcement condemning littering and reporting that it has contributed to an incredible amount of  track fires. Not only should you throw your trash in a trash bin whose sole purpose is to collect said trash, it would benefit all New Yorkers, and some could say the whole world, to go the extra step and pick up other, less considerate, people’s trash.

Last Saturday I went to Riverside Park’s Pier i to help out in their regular volunteer powered clean up. I was surprised, but pleased at the amount of people who had turned up early on a Saturday to help, especially because most were young people who seemed genuinely happy to lend their services. I have done the Riverside clean up before as part of the Pres Scholars push to impress the importance of community, generosity and giving back to others upon us. Previously, we have raked leaves, dug draining trenches and pulled weeds, but this time we were climbing rocks that descended into the river to pick up trash.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 10.58.22 PM

Three other Pres Scholars and I formed a mini team that took a section of the riverbank and just started scavenging. At first it looked relatively clean and I thought we would be done very quickly, but boy was I wrong. The rocks were big, so although it looked clean, all the garbage was hidden in the crevices, and there was a lot. Part of my job was to keep track of what exactly we found and how much, so I am not exaggerating when I say the amount of trash there was obscene. And it’s not even a place where people hang out directly adjacent! By far the most garbage we found was plastic bottles and, for some reason, foam. There was SO MUCH FOAM. I guess it’s because foam doesn’t really disintegrate so it was probably just there forever? All I know is, STOP USING FOAM PEOPLE. IT’S BAD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND WILL BE HERE AFTER WE ALL DIE. I cannot express the monstrous amount of foam we found. We also found two condoms (still packaged, thank God), a used tampon applicator (gross), a syringe (scary), and a full ball of yarn (why?). Whoever left all of that there, y’all are nasty.

Look at all our success!!

Look at all our success!!

Despite being thoroughly grossed out by not only the physical objects we found, but also by the knowledge that there is so much trash that no one sees or bothers to clean up, volunteering was fun. It was a beautiful day out, we made a real and quantifiable difference in the beauty of our city, and by not sleeping in like  I wished to, I got a lot done today! Since I was already on the West Side I even went to Trader Joe’s to buy groceries and it cost HALF of what I usually spend at the grocery store near my apartment! (More on that later). Most people want to help, but always find a reason not to, whether that be they are too busy, intimidated or tired. But volunteering can be fun! Just find something you like to do, bring a friend and remember that you are being one of the few and the great who proactively improve our world!


Presidential Scholars

Joining Presidential Scholars is great and everyone should apply. Being accepted is based off academics as well as community service, but you can only apply before the freshmen and junior semesters.

Being part of the Presidential Scholars, or “Pres Scholars” as it more commonly known, requires you to go to about one meeting a month on Wednesday nights from 6 to 8 pm. Every Pres Scholar also has to take one honors class each semester. I have taken Mayan Art and Culture, Art and Patronage in the Italian Renaissance, Sociology, and History of New York Architecture. These classes have been by far some of the best classes I have taken at FIT. Only Presidential Scholars and students who get special permission can take honors classes, so the size of the classes are not so huge. Also, the classes are specialized and the teachers are always amazing, often the most celebrated professors in the school. Taking these classes are helpful in finishing a minor if you choose to do so. I have recently finished my Art History minor and am in the process of finishing a Fashion Studies minor.

Irene Buchman

Irene Buchman

Irene Buchman, who is in charge of the Pres Scholars, is very focused on the liberal arts. Even though SUNY requires certain liberal arts in order to graduate, Professor Buchman really stresses the importance of broadening your horizons beyond fashion and business. Every meeting has a speaker who is a specialist in their field, but is never from the fashion industry. Buchman thinks we have enough fashion in our brains already, and she is probably right.

One of our colloquia last semester

One of our colloquia last semester

Pres Scholars also get some advantages in registration. Every semester students have to register themselves for the upcoming semester by getting up at an ungodly hour and praying they get the classes they want before all the slots fill up.  However, Presidential Scholars meet with Professor Buchman about two weeks before everyone else signs up, and chooses the block they want. This almost ensures not only you get the classes you desire, but also that you do not have trouble graduating because of unfinished SUNY requirements.

Pres Scholars in Panama!

Pres Scholars in Panama!

However, the best part of being in Pres Scholars is definitely our access to Professor Buchman. She knows everyone in this school, I mean everyone. If you ever have a problem with a class, or need a recommendation or anything like that she is a great resource. There have been many times Professor Buchman has graciously helped me when I turn up to her office unannounced and worried. Friendly, intelligent and incredibly generous with her time, Professor Buchman is the rock of the Presidential Scholars.

Oh yeah, the cookies are great too.