For the NYU News team, 2016-17 was the year we crowdsourced the ultimate guide to busting finals season stress, tracked our faculty's analysis of the most talked about (and maybe most contentious) election cycle ever, learned to stand up to wine snobs, and interviewed faculty couples about who hogs the bookshelf. (It goes without saying that there's never a dull moment around here.) As our final gift to the graduating class of 2017, we offer this list of at 17 other favorite stories from the past school year—the kind of stuff that just might make you miss this place.


photo: woman in red suit standing in front of a podium, man sitting in chair, man leaning against another podium

Researchers began the project assuming that the gender inversion would confirm what they’d each suspected watching the real-life debates: that Trump’s aggression—his tendency to interrupt and attack—would never be tolerated in a woman, and that Clinton’s competence and preparedness would seem even more convincing coming from a man. But the lessons about gender that emerged turned out to be much less tidy.

What If Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton Had Swapped Genders?


Developed by faculty, staff, and students, along with formerly incarcerated people, NYU's Prison Education Program works to ensure access to higher education for people in prisons and jails. The program currently offers courses leading to an Associate of Arts degree in liberal studies (with transferable credits) at Wallkill Correctional Facility in Ulster County, NY, and provides education support services for students upon their release. In this video, PEP instructor Laurie Woodard and students Jose and Vincent reflect on what they've learned.

"Imagining Possibilities": In Class with NYU's Prison Education Program


illustration: dollar sign dissolving

So much traditional advice about achieving the American Dream—years of steady work rewarded with enough savings for children’s college tuition and a comfortable retirement—emphasizes discipline and personal responsibility. And when we think about poverty, we tend to picture the chronically unemployed inhabitants of crumbling urban centers or isolated rural communities. But what about folks with jobs and homes in stable neighborhoods, who work hard and try to save but never seem to have enough cash when they need it?

The Plight of the Sometimes Poor


To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek series premiere, NYU physics professor (and sci-fi fan) David Grier leads a tour of his lab—the birthplace of the real-life tractor beam. In this video, Grier explains how the technology works and how it could find practical use in everything from environmental science to—yes—space exploration.

Straight Out of Star Trek


photo: collage of images of student veterans

“I’ve been in a war zone and I’ve seen real life and death situations. It really puts everything else in perspective. I now practice triage in my everyday life.”

For Veterans Day, Portraits of Service




illustration: brain on GPS map

Part of the problem with GPS that seems to induce greater susceptibility to dementia is the passivity factor—just blindly following directions or the dots on the screen. Humans are navigational creatures. We colonized almost all of this planet in 50,000 years. Interacting with the environment—trying to figure out where you are and what dangers there might be—is an incredibly complex process, and I think it’s fundamental to our humanity. When you just take instructions, you're not using that part of your identity at all, and it’s a really important part.

Reconnecting With Your Inner Magellan


photo: collage of firefighter and images from 9/11

I think that girls and young women should know that while it may not always be easy, it’s valuable to not take no for an answer. It helps open the doors to others in the future, and it not only helps women and girls to have these stereotypes broken down—it helps boys and men too. Nobody, whether you're a boy or girl, should be forced into a box just because you happen to be born one gender or the other.

On 9/11, Women Were Heroes Too


photo: virtual reality screenshot of broadway

Long before Wall Street became the financial capital of the modern world, this area was already a political and economic stronghold. The chieftains of many different cultures traveled here to trade, negotiate and share. It was a crossroads of many cultures.”




cartoon of girl looking at herself in the mirror

Technology becoming more accessible inevitably allows for more voices. So it totally makes sense that there would be more games that embrace vulnerability as we’re beginning to see more female developers. These are people who’ve probably had a different set of experiences.

How Should Games Make Us Feel?




cartoon illustration of someone sitting at a desk with poor picture and looking sad and someone sitting upright and looking happy

There’s the sore back you notice after a particularly stressful day at work or a long night finishing up a term paper, and then there’s chronic pain that really starts to interfere with your life. Telling them apart can be surprisingly tough, and because everyone experiences tension and soreness differently, figuring out when to seek treatment is a highly subjective, personal decision.

Computer Work Doesn't Have to Be a Pain in the Neck


photo: gallery with brick walls and red steel beams exposed

As an indigenous artist, I think a lot about the museum proposing itself as a neutral space. It’s a white space—as in white walls, white people .I find that proposition of neutrality problematic. But at the same time, I find that working within those spaces of friction can be generative for me.

When Those White Gallery Walls Aren't Neutral




illustration: Ebenezer Scrogoe walking downa  snowy street

It’s one of those stories that is impossible not to love. It’s about someone who's battered and bruised by life and turned into a complete misanthrope—but then whose heart is opened up to kindness and feeling. Scrooge turns into a good person, and we'd all like the believe that's possible.

What Would Christmas Be Without Scrooge?