WTF Am I Paying For?

10 services at NYU you didn't know you pay for

Brain Like NYU | Maya Mahmud | March 23, 2016

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Like most parents, my father is extremely concerned with the amount of debt I will be taking in after my four years at NYU. Being an intelligent man with a dorky sense of humor, my father thought it would a good idea to send me a link to this clip from Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. The comedian explains the depravity that comes along with student loan debt and ends with a passionate address to college students to “enjoy the f*** out of your college experience because you may be paying for it for the rest of your life!”

This instilled in me a fierce paranoia that I needed to be having more Crazy College Fun™. However, being underage with a shitty fake limits my options, so I thought of something different that would quell my anxieties.

NYU seems to be genuinely allergic to financial disclosure. Ever look closely at your financial aid package? There’s a part on Albert that says “Estimated Cost of Attendance.” On it is a section that just says “Fees” with $1,594 next to it…for every semester.

Vague much?? This may clear some things up for you.

Here are 10 services at NYU you need but didn’t know you’re already paying for:

Owned by Linkedin, this company provides hundreds of online tutorials for almost every kind of software and topic: Photoshop, Excel, Instagram, basic marketing analytics, drawing figures, CAD, 3D modeling and animation, and much more!

If you have a job interview or internship that requires proficient knowledge of any kind of computer database and software, all you have to do is watch a few videos and you’re set.

2. Library Research Tools
They’re not the most glamorous features, but they are definitely a necessity. I have heard people say far too many times that they forget they can get books from the library. I understand the urge to avoid the Red Tower of Death that is Bobst Library, but once you get past the stupid architectural design, you’ll find that Bobst has a lot to offer.

The librarians at Bobst are smart af. If you ask them for help, or if you rant a 5 second, half-baked thesis on neoliberalism and the Minions franchise, they will almost certainly find you relevant sources.

If you find asking for help too socially uncomfortable to do in person, they have the Ask a Librarian option online where you can email, call, or text anything you need.

Also, if Bobst doesn’t have what you need, NYU students have access to The New School Library on 16th and 5th Ave by Union Square, and Cooper Union Library on 7th and 3rd Ave.

Online databases like ProQuest and Gale are also extremely helpful for research papers.

3. “Free” Movies!
Another cool thing the Library is the Avery Fisher Center, located on the second floor of Bobst. They have an extensive catalog of movies from 1930s Charlie Chaplin films to Spike Jonze’s “Her.”

Beware of the late fees! They charge you $20 every day late, plus an extra $5 for every hour it’s late. Probably best to just watch them at the library. They have big screens.

NYU students also have access to HBO GO, which is really convenient because Game of Thrones comes back April 24!

4. Wasserman Jobs
The Wasserman Center has a website called CareerNet that allows you to search for any job category you want (advertising, web design, etc) and send in your application directly from the website. A job is every college student’s dream!

5. Internship Opportunities
CareerNet is also a great resource for internships. NYU has staff whose only job is to find students internships. Ask your advisor to set you up.

6. Clinical Care
The Wellness Center on 726 Broadway is a clinic that offers mental health assistance as well as a bunch of health services, and most of it is covered by insurance–even if you don’t have NYU insurance. Prescriptions normally have copays but BIRTH CONTROL IS FREE HYFR.

7. Discounted movie tickets!
If you go to the NYU Box Office on 566 LaGuardia Place (side entrance of Kimmel), you can pick up discounted movie tickets.

AMC/Lowes theatres are $9.50 (Can’t buy any tickets at a discount that are distributed by The Walt Disney Company because Disney doesn’t have enough money, right?)

United Artists, Edwards, and Regal Cinema are $9 (No expiration date! $1.50 surcharge in Manhattan theaters)

City Cinema, including Angelica Film Center are $8 (No expiration date! Can’t be used within the first two weeks of a film’s release)

Bow-Tie Cinemas are $7.50 (No expiration date! $1 surcharge at Manhattan theaters)

8. Virtual Lab Computer
The Virtual Computer Lab allows students to stream computer applications such as Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Mathematica, Stata, and much more.

After a number of visits to various NYU IT departments, and several employees blatantly stating they have no idea how to work the application, I finally got the answers I needed from some lovely students in lower level Bobst’s IT desk. It goes to show, students are the most informed and influential in any academic institution.

Here’s how it works:
• Open Firefox or Safari (it won’t work on Chrome)
• Go to NYU Home, then Academics, the VCL login is on the bottom left side
• Download the Citrix Receiver for mac or PC
• Follow the steps and install the application

Once Citrix is installed and you’re logged into the VCL server, click the application you need and it should open. If it comes up through TextWrangler (a bunch of open source codes for the computer literate) you need to switch your browser or uninstall and reinstall Citrix.

Saving work to your computer:
• Open the application
• Go to “file”
• Click “save as”
• Scroll down in the Documents Library and click “Access Local Files”
• Select a folder on your computer and “save”

Because you are streaming, if your computer disconnects from the WiFi server without saving, you will lose all your work! Make sure you save your work to the local drive and not the virtual computer lab desktop.

To access your saved documents, you must open them directly from the application instead of just opening it from your desktop. (“File” → “Open” → select saved doc)

Never again will you pay $20 a month for an assignment that only took you 3 days to do!

9. Web Publishing
Create your own website or blog with WordPress. It’s extremely easy to use and has different built in themes and tools to choose from.

There’s no such thing as too much media content. Make your internet presence as expansive as possible. If you have a website, I guarantee people will think you’re more legit.

10. GrantForward
Need a way to pay for all the expenses NYU shoves at you? GrantForward is an easy way to search grants based on criteria that pertains to you. Googling “Scholarships” can be too broad and can easily lead you to scam sites.

This is a must have. Free money is the best money! And we’re going to need lots of it…