Inside Graduate Studies

Summer in the City: Queens Museum Annual Passport Thursday

Posted by LIM College on Wed, Jul 29, 2015 @ 03:21 PM

Parul_Shah_Dance_CompanyYou may not be able to travel to India but tomorrow (7/30), you can pretend that you're there! The Queens Museum Annual Passport Thursday stops in India with a dance performance at 7 pm by the Parul Shah Dance Company.

The company performs rhythmic patterms of amazing intricacy combined with some crazy beats on the tabla...One group of strong and weak beats is topped by the next at two or three times the speed.

Finish the night off with a visit to little India in Jackson Heights, Queens for some unique shopping and of course, eating! Some of the best Indian food can be found along 74th Street beginning at Roosevelt Avenue.

Try the Jackson Diner for delicious curries and tandooris and definitely have the mustard greens. For dessert go to Rajbhog Sweets to sample syrup-soaked jalebis or creamy milk-fudge squares of barfi. Or, head to Shaheen’s for some Pakistani nutty sohn halwa or tutty fruity pera or coconut chum chum. It is all yum, yum!

Admission to the Queens Museum for students is only $4.

http://www.queensmuseum.org/2015/06/passport-thursdays 

 

Topics: summer plans, Queens Museum, Parul Shah, Little India

Summer in the City: Language Lessons for Free!

Posted by LIM College on Tue, Jul 21, 2015 @ 04:18 PM

 

globe-110775_640Bryant Park is a great space with lots to do...ping pong, pétanque, movies and more.

There are also free summertime language lessons!

Check out their website for where and when the beginner's Italian, Japanese and Brazlian Portuguese classes are scheduled.

 

Topics: Summer, Bryant Park, Language learning

Recap: CEO Speaker Series / James Rhee / Ashley Stewart

Posted by Gabrielle Aranda on Tue, Jul 14, 2015 @ 01:58 PM

James_RheeIn an industry where only a certain dress size is considered acceptable, Ashley Stewart catered to a different set of consumers. The CEO of the iconic plus-size fashion brand, James Rhee, dropped by LIM College Center for Graduate Studies to share with the graduate students his company's triumphs and struggles.

Last year, Ashley Stewart filed for bankruptcy and 27 of its stores closed. Though this was clearly a challenge to overcome, Rhee and Ashley Stewart employees did not falter. They were confident in the brand and everything it stood for.

Before he began his talk, Rhee warned LIM students that they would be “getting the perspective of a teacher, financier, operator, eternal optimist and overall lover of people”. He is proud to share that he is all of these.

He says that to succeed in life, one must know all the things that that one is not. “You should be aware of what you don’t know and it takes humility to admit that,” he says. So he admittedly asks a lot of questions. This is something that most people are hesitant to do.

Speaking about the company, Rhee stuck to the core values of the brand. The company adheres to authenticity, transparency and humility. He says, “Life is fun but there are certain principles you should stick by.”

Most people admire Rhee for transforming what was "the laughing stock of the business" into one of the leading plus size brands in the country. Though he is undoubtedly knowledgeable in the skills required to make a business successful, it is his heart and passion that stood out and made all the difference.

He realized that it was important to go back to who really mattered: the customer. "Ashley Stewart customers are the best.” Rhee says excitedly. The brand offers a very social shopping experience. He shared that a customer went into a store once and shouted, "I have an event, can someone help me choose a dress?" And everyone rushed to her aid (fellow customers included).

This is how he measures their company. “I know if we're doing our job well when we treat our customers well,” he explains. Ashley Stewart is more than just a clothing brand -- it is a community. “The Ashley Stewart shopper brings it,” says Rhee. “ She loves fashion and she wants to look good.”

Another thing to consider was the operations aspect of the company. The business was insolvent. They had to figure out how to move their merchandise correctly. It was a good thing that they identified with the consumer so they could do this the right way.

“It’s going to be a huge competitive advantage for you to be able to exude empathy.” Rhee explains. Kindness, compassion and empathy all contribute to the makings of a great leader.

Even after filing for bankruptcy, they donated $10,000 to YWCA in Brooklyn, a non-profit organization that helps empower women and eliminate racism. Rhee says, “If there’s a last thing that his company was going to do correctly, this was going to be it.” Supporting and empowering women has always been what Ashley Stewart was about.

It’s not often that fashion brands sell sizes from 14-26. Women should enjoy fashion whatever size they are. In any business, it’s important to know the customer, and Rhee and his team not only understand their customer, they care about her.

Rhee says that he is most proud of his team. He jokes that he manages a "circus." They work together like a family. The one takeaway from all of this, he says, is that “Success is being able to do the right thing.”

Rhee left off with some sound advice for LIM students. “When you work somewhere, you have to earn your keep. Don’t be naïve, you won’t get your dream job right away.”

Gabrielle Aranda

Topics: CEO Speaker Series, LIM Graduate Studies, LIM Grad Student, James Rhee, Ashley Stewart

Summer in the City: Free concerts!

Posted by LIM College on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 02:05 PM

Summer_ConcertSummer in NYC is pricey but your concert tickets don't have to be. There are tons of free concerts all summer long. 

For example, morning shows like the Today Show and Good Morning America have concerts on almost any day of the week. And while they are early in the morning, they are free!

today.com / gma.yahoo.com

Check out the entire list of free concerts in NYC for Summer 2015.

http://www.nycgo.com/articles/free-summer-concerts-2015 

Topics: Summer, music, Free, concert

Summer in the City: Free Summer Movies!

Posted by LIM College on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 01:53 PM

Coney_Island_Film_FestivalYes, New York is expensive, but there are ways to save money. Check out the page below for a list of FREE movies in the great outdoors of NYC! (Actually, some of the screenings are also indoors.) ;-)

From Brooklyn Bridge Park to Bryant Park to Randall's Island (and so many more places!), there are tons of free flicks to see like Ghosbusters, Frozen, Close Encounters and Insidious. Get the popcorn ready!

http://www.nycgo.com/articles/free-summer-movies-2015 

Topics: summer plans, New York City, Free, movies

Summer in the City: When You Cut into the Present the Future Leaks Out

Posted by LIM College on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 12:35 PM

Bronx_MousetrapThe city closed the doors on the Beaux Arts-style old Bronx Borough Courthouse in 1977, and although it was saved from demolition because of its landmark status, not much has been going on inside this stunning structure except for some looting.

However, No Longer Empty (NLE) is hosting an art show in the building. "When You Cut into the Present the Future Leaks Out" occupies three floors and include the works of 26 artists and site-specific works commissioned by No Longer Empty. 

The title of the exhibition references a quote by Beat generation poet William S. Burroughs and features paintings, sculptures, videos and works of mixed media.

Bronx_Court_Building

While you're there see if you can imagine this landmark in its glory days with granite floors, lavish stairways, and bronze doors. It's so nice to see some life breathed back into this building! 

When: Until July 19, Thursday–Sunday, 1–7 pm
Closed July 4 and 5 in observance of Independence Day weekend.

Where: 878 Brook Ave (at East 161 St and Third Ave)

Directions: 2 or 5 train to 3 Ave-149 St, walk northeast on Third Ave, left onto Brook Ave.

http://www.nolongerempty.org/nc/home/what-we-do/exhibitions/exhibition/when-you-cut-into-the-present-the-future-leaks-out 

Bronx_art

Topics: summer plans, art, Bronx

Summer in the City: LEGOs® on the High Line

Posted by LIM College on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 12:03 PM

Olaf_High_Line_2015Have you been to the High Line yet? It's a really cool park built on abandoned railroad tracks going from the Meatpacking District to midtown. Now there's even more reason to visit!

The Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson has created an installation of white LEGO® bricks that features an imaginary cityscape. All visitors to the High Line are welcomed to play with the installation...to build, take down and build again those lovely LEGO bricks!

Sponsored by High Line Art and Friends of the High Line, their website says, "As the inevitable entropy of the piece begins to soften the hard edges of the designed structures, and mounds of loose pieces gather in the corners between buildings, a beautiful collective creation takes form."

Olafur's art is driven by his interests in perception, movement, embodied experience, and feelings of self, says the website. "Elliason strives to make the concerns of art relevant to society at large. Art, for him, is a crucial means for turning thinking into doing in the world." Check it out!

http://art.thehighline.org/project/olafureliasson/#sthash.olZ5sSAP.dpuf

Topics: summer plans, The High Line, art, New York City

Summer in the City: Desire Lines

Posted by LIM College on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 11:46 AM

Trouve_spoolsWhen you think of Central Park, giant spools of thread do not normally come to mind. But for Italian artist Tatiana Trouvé that's what she came up with. Tatiana marked pathways in the park and estimated how long they were.

She translated her research into a three-dimensional form and created "Desire Lines," which are three large-scale storage racks that house a total of 212 spools. Each spool is wound with rope equivalent in length to a corresponding pathway and labeled to identify its location in the park.

According to the Public Art Fund, "Trouvé’s work is also a reflection on the broader cultural significance of walking. It’s an activity that ranges from personal recreation to political statement, and has inspired poets, musicians, writers, and artists."

Tatiana has associated each pathway with a title drawn from culture and history that relates to walking. "In this way, Desire Lines is both a systematic inventory of the park and an invitation to explore the political and poetic resonance of the simple act of taking a walk."

When: Until August 30th, all day and all night

Price: Free

Where: 60th St. & 5th Ave., Manhattan

Topics: art, New York City, Central Park

How To Look for an Apartment in NYC

Posted by Gabrielle Aranda on Thu, May 14, 2015 @ 03:27 PM

NYC_ExteriorLiving in Manhattan, the most amazing city in the world comes at a price. A very costly one, actually, and it’s called RENT. This is a particular dilemma for students who come to NYC to study at LIM from all over the country and the world.

Most of us are pretty shocked with the cost of living in this beautiful, but ridiculously expensive city. There is still hope for those who want to live in the city that never sleeps, (and not end up broke before the first month of living here!)

1. Go online.

If you want an effective and cost efficient way to find an apartment, you should research apartments online. Real estate broker, Jason Misrahi, says StreetEasy  is one of the best websites to look for apartments. There’s also Craigslist, but a word of caution. Not everyone on this site has the purest of intentions. You should always be wary and never pay for a deposit online before seeing the apartment.  LeaseBreak has listings for short-term rentals and if you're looking to lease your own apartment, you can also post the info here. Usually, these places are also already furnished. Lastly, the site Naked Apartments helps you decide on a good place based on the neighborhood of your choice. 

2. Take a walk.

Since the weather is so nice now, you can walk around a particular neighborhood that you are interested in. Chances are, you'll come across a “For Rent” sign. Take down the number, if there is one and call. If there's a doorman, ask for the management office number. This is a great way to avoid paying for a broker’s fee, and you can kill two birds with one stone. Exercising and apartment hunting!

Soho_exterior

3. Waiting lists.

There are also a lot of affordable housing options through waiting lists or lotteries. You can apply through the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development, the New York City Housing Development Corporation or the NYC Housing Authority. Because it is a lottery, you'll still have to look elsewhere, but it's worth a shot!

4. Go through the classifieds.

Looking-through classified ads may be an old school way of finding a place but hey, it’s tried and tested. Some of the ads are run by real estate agents so you’ll have to pay a broker’s fee, but landlords also post apartments in their buildings as well.

5. Update your status.

Use your social media to look for a new place. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all free. If you post a short message asking about places anybody knows of, someone is bound to reply. Word of mouth is also an effective way of letting people know you are on the lookout. A friend’s cousin’s coworker might be moving! You never know.

Also, living in Manhattan is not the only option. Living in the outer boroughs or even New Jersey may be a bit of a commute, but it gives you a chance to explore a whole new world far from school. Expect the size of your apartment to not be as big as your room back home, but, if you’re living your dreams, you won’t be spending as much time in it anyway. 

Gabrielle Aranda

Topics: NYC apartments, apartment in new york, real estate, New York City Housing Authority

Shihui Fu, A Woman with a Plan

Posted by Gabrielle Aranda on Thu, May 07, 2015 @ 10:35 AM

 

Shihui_Fu

Photo by Liming Guan

Passion, hard work and determination. These can all get you far in life. But, add creativity and talent, and you're bound for success! This cannot be more true for Fashion Management and Entrepreneurship graduate student, Shihui Fu (also known as Sheena). Her mother is actually a tailor, so you could say she grew up with fashion.

Back home in China, Sheena had a background in Economics, but she had a different calling. "I could never forget my dream to be in the fashion industry" she says.

She intends to combine fashion design and business and wanted to be able to have "freedom as a leader and a designer." And LIM College's Center for Graduate Studies certainly had a program that fit her career goals.

Earlier this year she had the opportunity to showcase her fashion collection in New York City! There was a charity fashion show to help end child trafficking during Fashion Week that had tables where designers could showcase their products. She applied for a table but instead they offered her the chance to show her collection on the runway! And, in March, her collection appeared on the pages of New Look magazine.

Shihui_fashions

Photo by Liming Guan


All the pieces in her collection are handmade and she has signed with a Chinese company to have her garments manufactured and sold in the country. "Some of the designers who have worked with this company have already become famous fashion designers in China," she says.

However, Shihui saw that after founding their own brand there were a lot of Chinese designers that had a hard time balancing the business aspect with the designing. "Their designs are great," she says, "but they can't make a profit due to their lack of market sense so I decided to pursue the fashion entrepreneurial dream in New York." 

Here at LIM Shihui says that she learned a lot which could contribute to her future business. To her, the most important part is the fashion marketing aspect. "How to position the business in the marketplace and how to target the customer are crucial to a business," she believes. And the curriculum at LIM has really helped to broaden her vision of how fashion businesses should work.

When asked how fashion marketing is different in China she explains, "People communicate differently. In China the competition is intense. For me, New York is a lot easier. There's no limit for art and fashion."

It’s true that Shihui has had some pretty unique opportunities here. She’s also trying to utilize all the resources at LIM and is working closely with an advisor from the Department of Experiential Education & Career Management.

After graduation, she would like to get a job in New York City. And then, "When I have enough experience, I’m going to put together a team and start my business," says Shihui.

There's no stopping a woman with a plan!

Shihui_Poster_Sheena_Fu

 

Topics: New York Fashion Week, China, graduate school, design, LIM, Shihui Fu