Wednesday, July 30, 2014

19 Not-So-Professional Reasons Why You Should Intern in NYC

      Let's be real, we all dream of it and loathe it at the same time. The summer internship–– the place where we'll pour 40 plus hours a week of our lives into, while all of our friends will seemingly be out enjoying some of the year's best weather. 

     But never fear... I have a secret for you: take your summer internship to the next level and intern in the big apple.

     That's right. While you'll technically be working, it probably won't seem that way. New York City has some of the best companies to work for and an atmosphere you'll be sure to fall love in love with in between the hustle of day-to-day work.

     I've spent the last nine weeks interning in this city and I must say it has been pretty incredible. On top of getting to work for a great company, I've got to spend my summer in one of the best cities in the world. So alas, here are 19 gnarly, not-so-professional reasons why you should intern in New York City (with a few tips from me, just in case you actually do end up here)!

1. There are landmarks around every corner…

My picks: Go for a run along the Hudson and see Lady Liberty and Jersey City off in the distance, or take a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to eat some of New York's finest pizza at Grimaldi's.

2.  ...And cold brew coffee will be obviously offered at every one of those corners.

My picks: The Bean is a fantastic coffee shop with free wifi and several locations––I recommend their cold brew! Brooklyn Roasting Company is great option if you find yourself out of Manhattan.

3. You will find a beautiful park to eat lunch at within just a short 5 to 10 minute walk from basically any office building.

My picks: The Highline is one of my favorite parks in the city. Although it's not quite in walking distance of my office. Other great parks in walking distance from a lot of big offices include the Hudson River Park, Bryant Park, Central Park, Washington Park and Battery Park (just to name a few).

4. And your lunch options are basically endless.

My picks: I fell in love with falafel this summer. So I may be a little bias when I recommend Mamoun's and Ba'al Cafe and Falafel. However I've also learned that the city is littered with great lunch places on every corner, including excellent pizza shops and soup, salad and sandwich cafes.

5. In the evenings some of the very parks you had lunch at will come a live with music and concerts.

My picks: Central Park has a nice lineup of summer shows. Prospect Park has a great variety of awesome free summer shows as well (although it does get crowded)! Irving Plaza (which isn't a park) has a nice variety of shows and is pretty popular in the NYC summer music scene too.

6. Getting around is as easy as swiping your metro card.

My tips: The subway is both the best and worst thing about New York City. It provides quick and convenient service (when it's working properly), but can also be one of the hottest, smelliest and overall rankest places ever. But hey, it sure beats driving! My advice is to embrace it and try and master the art of NYC public transportation. Plus on the bright side, at least there is always a designated driver!


7. … or as easy as renting a conveniently placed bike!

My tips: Who am I kidding... I've never ridden one of these bikes. While they always seemed like a valid option, I preferred walking or taking the subway. 

8. You will most likely be an accidental extra in next year’s hit indie movie!

My tips: If you come across a movie crew(which you probably will), make sure to play it cool. Accidentally being in a movie is one thing, but accidentally being in a movie and looking stupid is a completely different altogether.

9. And Williamsburg’s weekend flea market will make sure you fit the part just right!

My tips: Beware––this IS in fact hipster central. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Just be sure to expect lots of vinyl, handcrafted goods, overpriced "vintage" art pieces, and anything else you could find in your grandpa's spare bedroom.

10. Chilling at the beach with your crew is just an hour subway ride away.

My picks: Rockaway Beach is great. But even though it's New York, it's still the beach; be sure not to forget your sunscreen. Also, Rockaway Tacos is a great lunch spot only a couple blocks away from the main pier!

 11. Your weekend trip options are endless.

My tips: I suggest hiking at The Palisades––just make sure to take the right bus!

12. Walking down the streets is like an art show, without admission.

 My picks: The streets are always full of art. So far I've loved this billboard and an artist in Washington park I always see. There is also a great dinosaur mural above a gothic furniture store in the East Village worth checking out!

13. On Fridays you can go to real art shows at MOMA without the admission. (Thanks Uniqlo!)

My tips: Fridays are free after 4 p.m. during the summer at MOMA (thanks UNIQLO!). It does get pretty busy though, so I'd advise to get there early and be prepared to fight your way through dense crowd.

14. But where will you get your basics such as haircuts or groceries? Trust me, the city’s gotcha covered.

My tips: If you got to Astor Place Hairstylists ask for Yuri, you won’t regret it. Also, try to shop around. Grocery prices will appear steep at first, but with time you'll see that even the stores in NYC have a lot more to offer and you'll learn what to buy at each store to get the best price.

15.  One word… Brunch.

 My picks: Cafe Orlin, Mud, The Penny Farthing are my top three picks. Cafe Orlin has great everything. Mud has the best coffee in the world. The Penny Farthing's french toast will rock your socks.

16. You’ll catch yourself staring off aimlessly into an array of captivating skylines such as these.

My picks: The Brooklyn Bridge from one of the Circle Line Cruises is awesome. Also, just walking down the streets at sunset will give you quite the skyline.

17. Oh, and these too.

My picks: Astor Place, Chinatown, and Brooklyn Bridge Park.

18.  Hot dogs and rides at Coney Island are a summer must.

My tips: Make sure to ride the rides before eating the hot dogs!

19. And even though it's all ridiculously expensive... I mean, it’s New York City people… C’mon! Do I really need to continue?

My tip: Just "Dive In." You only have so many summers to be a twenty-something...

Written by Kevin Schultz, Scientific American, Northern Kentucky University
Edited by Alexis Reliford, ESSENCE, Northwestern State University of Louisiana

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