Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Summer Q&A: Recent Alumni from the Class of 2014

Now that the summer is well underway, we reached out to a few recent Arts and Science alumni from the class of 2014 to see what they are up to.

Anna Silman 


What did you study while you were at NYU?
I did a masters in journalism with a focus in magazine writing.

Name a moment during your time as a graduate student that stands out as being most memorable or something you are most proud of. 
For me, the best part of studying at the journalism school was getting to hear so many amazing guest speakers like Tom Wolfe, Jill Abramson, Emily Nussbaum, Chuck Klosterman and David Remnick, among others. I also got to hear Andrew Solomon speak about his newest book, Far From the Tree, which was really exciting because he's one of my favorite writers.


Tell us about your current job at Vulture.com. 
I work the night shift for Vulture (New York Magazine's entertainment site), which involves keeping the site updated with entertainment news from about 9pm-2am. I drink a lot of caffeine.

Name a book that you read at NYU that you would recommend to others.
One book that really stuck with me is The Snakehead by Patrick Radden Keefe, which I had to read for a class called "Storied New York." It's about the history of human smuggling in New York's Chinatown, and the depth of reporting in it is just amazing. I live in Chinatown, and it really made experience the neighborhood with fresh eyes.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully getting paid to write things!

What is something you learned about NYC or NYU that you would share with other students who may be new to NYU?
Get to know your professors -- they are really your greatest resource. Also, make sure your apartment has air-conditioning.


Sara Samarasinghe 


What did you study while you were at NYU?
I majored in Economics (Policy) with minors in Creative Writing and Business Studies (Stern).

Name a moment during your time as a graduate student that stands out as being most memorable or something you are most proud of. 
I took a freshman honors seminar called Impossible Writing with Jonathan Safran Foer, and really appreciated the opportunities I had to discuss my writing with such an inspirational young writer.

Where are you currently working? 
I recently started working as an analyst at Morgan Stanley.

Name a book that you read at NYU that you would recommend to others.
I read Random Family by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc for a nonfiction course.  LeBlanc spent years immersed in her subjects' lives, and it was so fascinating to read such a marvelously well-done and gripping piece of nonfiction.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years, I hope to advance my career in financial services and have published at least a few novels.

What is something you learned about NYC or NYU that you would share with other students who may be new to NYU?
Do all the touristy things now! Your college career will go by so fast, but make some time to check out different neighborhoods, see landmarks, visit museums, and really absorb the city outside NYU's bubble.

Ricky Smith 


What did you study while you were at NYU?
I studied journalism and politics while I was at NYU. I went with the print journalism option.

Name a moment during your time as a graduate student that stands out as being most memorable or something you are most proud of. 
I am most proud of the experience I got to share with my family at the Arthur L. Carter Institute's party for graduating seniors this year. During my time studying journalism, I became great friends with a handful of my professors and counselors. And after four years, my family finally got to meet these people--the people that helped me realize my passion for writing. Hearing the professors I respected the most tell my parents that they were proud of me was a moment I'll never forget. It was like four years of hard work had suddenly paid off right before my eyes.

Your job at the Food Network sounds exciting. Can you tell us about it? 
Working for Food Network is absolutely amazing. I work on the entertainment team, so I help with show and chef content on the website primarily. I'm learning a ton about how to build web pages, which is really exciting. I also pitch, produce, and build original content for the Food Network blog, FN Dish. And yes, there is a ton of food everywhere...all the time.

Name a book that you read at NYU that you would recommend to others.
My sophomore year, I read Make No Law by Anthony Lewis and I really loved it. The author investigates a major U.S. Supreme Court case that helped shape how we interpret the First Amendment today. I'd recommend it for anyone who enjoys debating the boundaries of media and things of that nature.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Before I accepted my current position, I worked on the social media team at Food Network and loved it. In 10 years, I would really love to be the Social Media Director for a major media company.

What is something you learned about NYC or NYU that you would share with other students who may be new to NYU?
NYU helps make New York City seem like home. I'm from Ohio and didn't know a single person in NYC when I moved here, but NYU helped make the city seem just a little bit smaller. Everything sort of builds upon your experiences at NYU. You make a few friends that really last, together you gain the confidence to start chasing your dreams. and then four years laters you end up feeling like you can take over the world. I don't know if I would have made it in this city without the people I met at NYU, and that makes me very grateful.


Stephen Sharer


What did you study while you were at NYU?
I majored in Economics and minored in BEMT.

Name a moment during your time as a graduate student that stands out as being most memorable or something you are most proud of. 
I was most proud of the time I spent volunteering abroad in London. I participated in the SHINE Project in which I was able to assist in teaching a class to students and was able to connect with them on so many different levels, helping create a positive change in their life while they created a positive change in my life as well.

Where are you currently working? 
I just recently started working as an Account Manager for TubeMogul.

Name a book that you read at NYU that you would recommend to others.
My favorite book is Love and Lies by Sara Samarasinghe. She just graduated as well and her books are truly amazing.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Not 100% sure. I would love to be the head of my own company, an app inventor or an inventor of some unique but useful product.

What is something you learned about NYC or NYU that you would share with other students who may be new to NYU?
Never turn down an opportunity to explore. You never know who you may meet or what unexpected experiences you will benefit from. Make the most of every opportunity, take chances. 

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