We were just learning about the tragedy of Jews during the Holocaust in American History class. Hoping to learn more about the atrocity, my friend and I decided to tour the Museum of Jewish Heritage. At first, it was just out of curiosity and of course just me trying to fulfill the academic blog post requirement for Freshmen Seminar class. I expected the trip to be as boring as any other museum I’ve been to (I’m not so much a museum person). However, 10 minutes into touring the museum, I’ve found it to be an amazing experience. Looking more into the events that many Jews went through like that genocide during World War II, I was caught in disbelief. No matter how much I was told about the hardships Jew had faced during that time period, it wasn’t really until this day that it stood out to me. Honestly, it was a great opportunity for me broaden my knowledge about the things in life and learn more about the cultures around me.
PWC is a finance and accounting business that I found interest in. Although it was outside of school grounds, finding someone that I attended the same church with provided me with insight of what he does in the company. He was a tax associate for the business and told me that he took care of the business funds. This meant that he had built charts and presentations to show the growth or decline of the company and what the reasoning for this was. Learning more about PWC and the potential career for me to go into was a learning experience and helped me to have a better understanding of what I may pursue for my future career.
Getting my resume looked at and checked was interesting, there was so much that I didn’t consider beforehand. In high school, i had to submit a resume to one of my teachers and they checked it over, but they never got into a cover letter into the specifics. I never knew how to construct a cover letter and by walking into the center and getting my resume checked, i learned so much. In the picture, those are just some notes i wrote, but, it wasn’t the resume so much as Starrs itself. Through Starrs, i learned how important a cover letter is for jobs, especially your career and going through Starrs, something I haven’t done before, I realized how much there actually is and how useful it is to us, students. There’s so many different ways to network through Starrs, it would be a waste of time of being a Baruch student, if I didn’t utilize it and each time i go into the website i learn something new or I see more and more opportunities. The workshops coming up, the workshops coming up, don’t contain my interest too much, however if one does, I’m always on the look out for that. Especially if there is a one about interviews. Even though, I don’t see myself at being bad at interviews, I’m not really good at them, so there is always room for improvement. Which means I have to practice. Going to the center wasn’t just for my resume, although it did help alot, it was an eye opener because from the resume, i started to look at Starrs as a whole and realize how much I can gain from being active on the site and partaking in workshops. I already have gained invaluable skills from it and will only further these skills by continuously using Starrs. I never realized how big Starrs could be until I took the time to go through it.
On Oct 24th, I attended the Fall 2017 Diversity Pipeline Career Programs Panel & Networking Event. The event was hosted by the STARR Career Development Center. It included many programs catered to minority students, such as myself, like SEO, MLT, and the T. Howard Foundation.
Before going to the event, I was a bit hesitant. However, I knew that this was a great opportunity that I shouldn’t pass up on and so I went. The fact that it was co-sponsored by organizations such as NABA and Success Network, which I’m apart of, gave me extra incentive to go.
The event was split into two sections. The first section was the Career Panel where the moderator would pose a question and the representatives for these programs would take a few minutes to respond to them. The responses were great and very helpful in terms of understanding how to get into these programs and how they can benefit you. I took notes on the phone on all the seven programs to see which ones I might to be interested in.
After the Career Panel, there was a Networking session where we got to speak one-on-one with the representatives. I took that time to speak with representatives America Needs You (ANY) and SEO. They answered my questions and encouraged me to apply if I don’t know exactly what career path I want to follow.
In the end, I was very glad I went to this event. Three programs I intend to apply to from this event are ANY, MLT, and SEO. One thing I noticed for many of these programs is that they require a high GPA and urge students to participate in clubs and other leadership opportunities. This is very good to know as a freshman as I see what specific steps I need to take to get into these programs.
My academic blog post happened a while ago, September 14. I attended the international study abroad fair along with Charisse and Sudipa. At the fair, I got to see so many countries to study in. Charisse explored countries like Japan and Korea, while Sudipa and I looked for European countries; United Kingdom, Germany, France. We were so excited. However, I was more attracted to the volunteer and career option booths because I am already an international student. I asked around about the information to volunteer and work abroad, sadly most of the opportunities are limited to graduating students only. When the time comes, I hope I will be able to join other Baruch students as well as students all over the world to volunteer and work abroad. It was great seeing other colleges at Baruch as well, the network that Baruch has is amazing, if Baruch does not offer the country and school I want to go to, I can apply to the school through other colleges as well. The study abroad fair was also a great opportunity to talk to upperclassmen about their academic and social experience abroad.
On October 26, Professor Levin arranged for our Art History class to visit the Museum of Jewish Heritage. The two quotes at the exhibit entrance, “remember, never forget” and “there is hope for your future” exemplify the goal of the museum which is to emphasize memory of the past and hope for the future, which is exemplified by the two quotes at the exhibit entrance. The museum is called a ‘Living Memorial to the Holocaust’ and the various artwork and architecture embody that principle. The building is shaped as a six-sided pyramid with six tiers to represent the six million Jews that were murdered in the Holocaust. Additionally, the museum features a beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, both beacons of hope, freedom, and new beginnings.
My favorite artwork featured at the museum was the Garden of Stones by Andy Goldsworthy. The artist selected eighteen boulders from Vermont in which he designed a method to plant a tree within the stone to represent life and rebirth. The number eighteen is significant in the Jewish culture because the Hebrew word for ‘life’, חי, is numerically equal to eighteen. Goldsworthy’s masterpiece allows the viewer to appreciate the seemingly impossible growth of the Jewish population after the atrocities of the Holocaust, as he portrays the seemingly impossible notion of a plant sprouting from a stone.
Another meaningful work of art is Nathan Rapoport’s ‘Flame’, a bronze relief sculpture, classified as expressionistic art, as it communicates high levels of emotion. The sculpture depicts Jewish men and women in terror, and they seem to frantically run in all directions, like a flame. A Rabbi is featured holding onto a Torah as he holds on to the last fragments of his heritage and culture and scrambles to save his religion. Following this theme of holding onto religion, the exhibit features various Torah scrolls, calligraphic inscriptions of the Old Testament and Jewish laws. The various Torah scrolls were miraculously rescued by Jewish men from burning synagogues on Kristallnacht — the night of broken glass — and hidden until the Holocaust was over.
At the museum, This is Nazi Brutality by Ben Shahn is displayed which is a response to the Nazi’s destruction of Lidice, Czechoslovakia, and the murder of its civilians. Professor Levin showed us this work of art in lecture and it was an awesome experience to see a work from a PowerPoint slide in real life at a museum which shows the global reach of art and the messages the work intends to relay; this work serves as a testament to the reaction of the German aggression in Europe. Another artifact that will forever serve as a testament of the past is Thea Gottesmann’s Liberation Skirt, Blouse, and Bag which retells the history of the liberation of death camp Mauthausen. American soldiers bought fabric with them for the Jewish prisoners to make clothing for themselves to replace their inmate uniforms. The exhibit features a beautiful dress she made upon being liberated which represents her first moments on freedom and independence. Thea Gottesmann fashioned her prison uniform into a bag to carry food and personal belongings, something she was not able to have while in Mauthausen.
Like Maya Lin’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the Museum of Jewish Heritage features a wall of commemorating thousands of Holocaust victims. The wall is a collage of faces of Jewish children and families that were murdered, with a book that told the stories of each individual. A viewer is able to connect deeply to the Jews who lost their lives as he or she stares into their eyes and sees the cruelty of the Nazi’s. I think this memorial is more effective than the Vietnam Veterans Memorial because although Maya Lin inscribes the names of all the fallen soldiers in the war, the idiom ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’ proves true and I was more moved after seeing one panel of Jewish faces than the entire monument in the National Mall.
This trip to the Museum of Jewish Heritage helped to hit home the lessons that Professor Levin teaches in the classroom that the goal of art is to bring people together. Being Jewish myself, the art and history displayed at this museum allowed me to connect deeply with my cultural roots and remember the persecution my people faced and how they used art to preserve their heritage.
On November 2 I spoke at baruch voices. For me this was a slightly overwhelming task since I have never been good at public speaking. It is usually extremely intimidating to go up knowing so many people are listening to everything you say but the atmosphere on thursday was so different than anything I have experienced before. Everyone was so calm and welcoming and seemed genuinely interested to hear what everyone had to say. One by one people took the stage and once they started talking you could see calm return to their face and authority return to their voice, they owned that story and they knew it was their job to tell it right. The stories were as different as the people telling them, they were sad, inspiring, funny, unexpected. I think this experience was also helpful because everyone makes snap judgements without trying but hearing these stories not even a minute after seeing these people for the first time really goes to show these judgements don’t mean anything and not to hold onto them. This was a wonderful experience and I hope it continues to grow and more people get to experience what I did.
On thursday September 28 I attended the club fair with Nancy, Charisse, and Sudipa. I went mostly to look for the accounting society, a club I hadn’t seen at the convocation day carnival. To me it was important to meet with one of their members. By talking with two of the members I decided this was a club I was interested in working toward full membership in. They got industry advice and experience through meeting with the professionals the club brought in. The club also had a focus on helping their community, in order to become a full member in the club you had to attend two club sponsored community service events. Finding this club wasn’t easy though. Once I walked in the gym I was lost in a sea of school spirit and club pride. Every club would hand you a flier or pull you aside to explain their club and how it would benefit. This was definitely a fun way to spend my break between classes. I was introduced to so many clubs I wouldn’t have heard of otherwise while in a better place to judge what I wanted out of a club than at the convocation carnival.
As a college student, finding part time jobs and internships are very important. Jobs and internships pave the road for a successive career after college. Despite the knowledge that jobs and internships are important, finding one is harder said than done. Baruch however has tons of opportunities and knowledge for all types of careers, professions and internships, one of these is team Baruch itself. Since I was interested in joining team Baruch, I went to one of the orientations to see what it was about. In the orientation the people working for team Baruch spoke about what they experienced and how much they learned through team Baruch. After going to team Baruch’s orientation I was able to understand more about what being in team Baruch entitled and what was expected. Team Baruch’s orientation gave an impression of what is expected of one in the workplace and how to stand out. Baruch really does offer a wide variety of job opportunities and team Baruch is just one of them.
This week I visited the Tech and Career Panel where I was able to interact with individuals in the technological fields while hearing about their personal stories about how they got to their current position. As someone who is conflicted with what I want to select for my major for the future, it was great to see that two of the panelists were fellow Baruch graduates. Being able to see that these workers were in a similar position to me and were to find their passion and profession through a CIS major in this school really opened my eyes for what opportunities and doors were in front of me. Not only that but the personal narratives of the workers allowed me to put myself in their shoes and see their work environment through my eyes. The way the panelists divided their workloads into percentages and went into depth with their daily tasks such as client interactions and networking really made me wonder if i wanted to pursue that in the future. One of the panelists worked as a product manager in his firm and this particularly stood out to me because he described his work life as something that was never consistent since he never knew what to expect when he walked into work every day. His workday ranged from asking and answering questions about technologies for businesses and clients to meeting certain business and clients and negotiating deals. This idea of a dynamic work experience really caught my attention and I wouldn’t have been aware of both this profession and its availability at Baruch had I not visited this career meeting.