Local Stops: Pat Kiernan, Pizza Cakes, And God Damnit NY Times Real Estate Section

- In the latest installment of GOD DAMMIT NY TIMES: (Related: GOD DAMMIT NEW YORK).


- In the words of City Editor Kelly Weill: “This might make me give up my veganism.”

- A look into news anchor, New Yorker, and all around badass Pat Kiernan’s 15-hour workday.

- The White House fox (and no, it’s not Joe Biden).

Photo of the Day by Rishi Bandopadhay

Pop Culture May Be(yoncé) The Future Of Higher Education

Lately, it seems like universities are finally buying into the power of pop culture and introducing the topic into their classrooms. As early as 2011, Georgetown came out with a “Sociology of Hip Hop: Jay Z” course.  Other professors and universities soon followed suit, and developed similar courses that used pop culture as a reference point:  “The Sociology of Miley Cyrus” (Skidmore), “Politicizing Beyoncé” (Rutgers), and closer to home, “Sean Combs and Urban Culture” (NYU). Putting initial excitement about the glamor of such courses aside, is it more beneficial for students to have something relatable, though potentially distracting to traditional academia, presented in the classroom?

Rutgers University Professor Kevin Allred, who has taught the “Politicizing Beyoncé” course, states: “I use Beyoncé to discuss race, gender, and sexuality in the U.S. because her cultural influence is so pervasive and as one of the most powerful black women in pop culture today, what she does says something about the ways we see sex, gender, and race as categories in society.”

He also stresses the importance of retaining students’ interest. “I firmly believe that you have to make your material interesting to students to engage them, especially in today’s technological world, or else you risk them being unable to relate, and thus deem the material important… to study them [social and cultural issues] we also have to look at ourselves. And I think pop culture helps do that.” Read more…

[PHOTOS] Take A Look Back At NYU Through The Ages

Nassau and Beekman, 1830′s and today.

NYU’s location has changed quite a few times over the years. When the University was founded in the early 1830′s, the first classes were held in a 4-story building on Nassau and Beekman, near City Hall. The building, known as Clinton Hall, was constructed to be the new home of the New York Mercantile Library which presumably rented out space to the university. The new college, then called the University of the City of New-York, quickly outgrew the downtown space and began construction at Washington Square in 1832. Read more…

De Blasio Chats It Up At His Alma Mater

Bill de Blasio, the recently elected mayor of New York City and a member of NYU’s class of 1983, stopped by Skirball yesterday as the 17th guest speaker in the Alumni Association’s “Speakers on the Square” series. The mayor, who graduated with a degree in Metropolitan Studies, chatted with Fox’s Maria Bartiromo (also an alumna) about politics, leadership, and his time at NYU.

President Sexton introduced the pair and hailed them both as “stars in the pantheon of NYU.” Bartiromo went on to ask de Blasio about his experience as an NYU student in the 80’s. To say that the mayor was involved would be an understatement: a recipient of the Presidential Scholarship, de Blasio served as Weinstein’s hall president, co-founded the Coalition for Student Rights, and led protests against the administration before graduating on to an extensive career in public service.

De Blasio only just passed 100 days of mayorship. His list of achievements doesn’t come close to that of, say, Michael Bloomberg, but Baritromo was nonetheless eager to hear about the new mayor’s visions for the future of our city. Read more…

NYU’s Fourteenth President L. Jay Oliva Passes Away

On Thursday April 17, NYU’s fourteenth president L. Jay Oliva passed away. His cause of death has yet to be released. The New York State native was 80-years-old at the time of his passing.   

A graduate of Manhattan College and Syracuse University, Oliva began his tenure at NYU as a Russian professor in 1960 and served as an administrator from 1972 to 1991, when he assumed the role of NYU’s fourteenth president. After 11 years of service as president, Oliva passed the torch to John Sexton in 2002.  

”Under Jay Oliva, we have really achieved much of what we dreamt of 25 years ago,” NYU chairman Martin Lipton told the Times in 2001.  ”We have finished the transformation from a regional commuter school to a global university.” Read more…

Local Stops: The Aliens Are Here, Old Spice (Girls), And Outed Porn Stars


What happens when you come out as a porn star? Vox takes a look.

The Secret Service once threatened to kill Mr. Met. We’ve all been there, guys.

Your favorite Spice Girl just turned 40, and you’re old too now, and we’re all going to die one day.

Adult kickball players: Just like college students.

Photo of the day by Caleb Savage

College Students Everywhere Mourn As New Study Says Naps Will Kill Us All

As college students, we’re constantly being told we need to get more sleep. We’re told that if we don’t, our brains won’t function as quickly or retain information, we’ll gain weight, and our immune systems won’t function as well, to name a few.

Indeed, there are a lot of repercussions to not getting sufficient shut-eye. But let’s be honest: Unless you’re in Tisch and have no real homework to slave over, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything we need to do and get an adequate amount of sleep. We end up adopting an “I can sleep when I’m retired dead” attitude and compensate for our lack of slumber by spending our life-savings on caffeinated drinks from Starbucks.

To compensate, we take naps. Lots of them. But according to a recent study by researchers at the University of Cambridge, this might end up killing us in the long run.

Read more…

The Reynolds Changemaker Challenge Happens Every Year And You Should Take Advantage

The NYU Reynolds Changemaker Challenge (CmC) is an annual opportunity for undergraduates to propose and develop social impact projects with support from experts in the field of social entrepreneurship.

Selected teams are awarded up to $1000 seed grants and the winner of the grand prize is awarded up to $10,000, additional Reynolds-sponsored resources, and the snazzy title of “The NYU Reynolds Best Overall Venture.”

The Reynolds Program is a cross-university social entrepreneurship initiative housed in Wagner and funded by the Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation. It was established eight years ago and the Changemaker Challenge has been running since 2006. Read more…

Why NYU Secrets Is A Community (Even Though People Are Mean)

Earlier this month, when an international student posted to NYU Secrets that he didn’t understand America’s tipping system, the comment section filled with insults.

“GTFO out of america,” Josephine Elle wrote, not mincing words. She wasn’t alone, though—the students who post to NYU Secrets are often astonishingly cruel both to the secrets’ authors and to each other. When others jump in to moderate the fray, the cruelest commenters seem unfazed. In November, a discussion got so heated that the students began posting comments asking that others back off. “We are not overreacting,” Jordan Sutphen responded. “We just have a variety of insults to spew at a woman we do not respect.”

Callous insults are the life blood of most unmoderated internet forums, but NYU Secrets is so preoccupied with creating a school community that the spiteful comments are surprising. The page’s stated mission is to give NYU a community, and the students interviewed for this article agreed almost unanimously that it has done so. Why do students consider a page that isn’t about empathy, camaraderie, or even school spirit an NYU community? Read more…

John Sexton Provided His Son With University Housing

If you’re a Tisch graduate looking to make it on Broadway, or just someone aspiring to be an actor in the Big City, you may be concerned about finding affordable housing. Finding convenient living spaces in New York can be a bit of a hassle, especially if your paychecks aren’t exactly reliable. Fortunately for Jed Sexton, a former aspiring actor and son of NYU President John Sexton, housing was provided for him by a certain benevolent university.

In the early 1990s, our lovable, huggable, controversial figurehead John Sexton pulled some strings and scored his son an apartment at 240 Mercer Street, a NYU-owned building that was supposed to function as housing for NYU faculty and law students. Jed Sexton (the world’s other J-Sexy) lived in his own apartment at 240 Mercer until 2002, when he married Danielle Decrette. The two then moved into a newly renovated duplex (also at 240 Mercer), where they lived until 2007.

NYU Vice President of Public Affairs John Beckman explained, “In the early- to mid-1990s, the law school had a real problem filling its housing, so they took a number of steps to address the high and problematic vacancy rate.  The steps included renting units to students from other law schools (New York Law School, Cardozo Law School, and Brooklyn Law School); converting some of the residential space to office space; renting units to the family members of faculty—one of whom was Jed Sexton—and to law school administrative employees.” Read more…