READ the Best of Portfolio, featuring a selection of the best published work from Portfolio students.

KEEP UP with journalists' beats in Blogfolio, updated throughout the day.

  • Read more about Portfolio

  • See sample portfolio proposals

  • Application information

  • Video of guest speakers and Master Classes (requires RealPlayer)

    Search for talent

    Culture Plus

    Writing from Hong Kong
    by Hillary Brenhouse

    The Not-So Private Parts
    by Kashmir Mandolin Hill
    To what extent do we still care about violation of privacy? With the advent of social networking sites where individuals lay bare the details of their lives, and the privacy sacrifices made in the name of safety and security, some might suggest we've entered a post-private age. Which aspects of privacy do we willingly sacrifice, and why?

    Writing from Berlin
    by Charly Wilder

    Art Is Commerce: Tracking the New Economy of Culture
    by Eric Hynes
    I'm interested in the creative minds, personalities, and ideas that work toward making art and culture economically viable. How are art and culture packaged, curated, and sold? How are they enjoyed, consumed, and paid for? The business of art is going through a period of major transition, when literally all of the arts are reckoning with failing or outmoded business models, and this reckoning in turn generates fascinating ideas and plans for profitably moving forward. Some paths are currently being taken, others lay ahead, and others are old and well-trod but may still be useful. When I speak of a "New Economy of Culture" I mean economy in its various manifestations, from the current American and global economy to the unique business models for art communities and enterprises, and to the structures, ideas, and professions that support the dissemination of art. To some degree, all of my stories will acknowledge, or even be framed by, the current economic crisis. But I believe this transition, as evidenced by the prolonged demise of compact discs and the uncertain future of film distribution, books, newspapers, magazines, DVD's, etc., predates this crisis and will continue beyond the eventual recovery of the Dow Jones.

    Step By Step: Preserving Choreographic Legacies
    by Margaret Fuhrer
    What is a dance, when it's not being performed? Who owns it? How should it—can it—be preserved?

    I plan to explore the difficulties associated with the transfer of dances from one generation to the next. This transfer is uniquely complicated. Dance has no canonized form of documentation (with the possible exception of Labanotation, which isn't known widely enough to be useful in most cases), and dancers are generally encouraged to develop their own interpretations of choreographers' steps—meaning that performances of a work can vary widely. When a choreographer is still alive, he is able to shape and endorse the way his work is performed. But after his death, choreographic legacies are singularly challenging to maintain. And now that a choreographer's body of work has become a definable commodity, with each dance an item to be copyrighted and licensed, the way dances are preserved is critically important.

    Forgetting Atlas: Mapping in the digital age.

    by Benjamin Migdal Popper
    How do people organize the space around them, especially when they live in a place as chaotic as New York.

    Visit me at

    Performing Self: Public Presentations & Modern Modifications
    by Amy Eisinger
    A modern day examination of the public presentations of self in daily life.

    Barrel to Glass, Field to Plate
    by Justine Kirkpatrick Sterling

    Revolution 3.0: Reading and Writing in the Digital Age
    by Nina Shen Rastogi
    In their introduction to The Book History Reader, David Finkselstein and Alistair McCleery write: "The history of human communication can be interpreted as comprising three major revolutions: in the movements from orality to literacy, from the written text to the printed text, and from print to computer-generated content."

    We're currently living in the middle--or perhaps more accurately, the early stages--of this third revolution. My portfolio will attempt to track some of the ways in which technology is changing two of the most basic human activities of the past four centuries: reading and writing.

    Pragmatic Utopia
    by Jonah Owen Lamb
    Why people reject mainstream American culture is an open question. But whether for moral, social or political reasons this is an American tradition. From Joseph Smith to Henry Thoreau to the communes of the 60s Americans have never ceased in their search for another way to live. How utopian communities succeed is another question. Once they have separated themselves, how do they live up to their ideals? What kind of compromises do they have to make in order to survive? And in making such choices how much is lost? These and other dilemmas are amplified in a place like New York City where the main stream is never far away.

    My weblog: My weblog

    Shared Sounds, Shared Space: the City as Sonic Tableau
    by John MacDonald
    The density of cities is a phenomenon we tend to imagine in human terms – great masses of people shoving their way into subway cars, cramped elevators, and 50-story apartment buildings. But cities are also great generators of sound as much as there of social interaction. The squawk of taxi horns on 5th Avenue, the salsa rhythms of store-front jewelry stores on Canal Street, the drunken cat calls on Ludlow Street at 4 a.m. – these are all as indelible to city life as traffic jams and pollution. And with rock shows at Webster Hall, sound installations at Williamsburg's Monkey Town, and the in-store pop that greets every boutique clothing shopper, New York has just as much to offer indoors as out. If we agree that music (or just plan noise) is a ubiquitous part of New York life, what does this mean in practice? How does an art-form so deeply ingrained in our daily lives affect who we are at home, at work, and at play? What unique cultures, both artistic and domestic, develop in an environment saturated with sound?

    The New Boom
    by Justin Jouvenal
    The technology, paradigms and players driving the new tech boom.

    by Kate Bolick

    Digital Life
    by Scott Lamb
    I graduated in December 2004 from NYU's Cultural Reporting and Criticism program, where I also participated in the Portfolio Program. I've since worked for Der Spiegel's English-language Web site (as part of the Fulbright young journalists program) and, where I wrote the daily culture briefing the Fix, edited Audiofile, and produced Salon's podcasts.

    Currently, I'm a senior editor at BuzzFeed. My personal blog is at

    by Eryn Loeb

    Muslims in the Melting Pot
    by Shomial Ahmad
    A Muslim woman living in Texas once told me, "We are the misfits here. We are the misfits back in Pakistan." She was reflecting the anxiety of belonging familiar to many first-generation immigrants. My portfolio explores the ways Muslims are becoming a part of America, and yet, how they increasingly feel pressure of being Muslim after September 11th.

    The Shut-In Revolution: How Lo-Fi Culture is Changing How We Listen to Music
    by Sarah Elizabeth Feldman
    I'm looking at how the role of grassroots movements in popular music is changing with changing technologies. Proponents of internet distribution and home recording technologies claim that these new developments are "democratizing" the industry, making it so that previously marginal voices can now be heard, but do the facts bear this out? And is a model based so heavily on the individual - on technologies that allow a single musician to produce and distribute an album without even leaving his or her house - even desireable?

    Life 2.5
    by Hailey Eber
    The dynamic intersection of virtual and physical worlds and what it means for how we live today and tomorrow.

    See my latest epinions on my blog.

    Music and Culture in the Digital Age
    by David Marchese

    Kids, Culture, and the Classroom
    by Sarah Karnasiewicz

    Retirement; Rust Never Sleeps
    by David Puner
    Retirement is much more than checking out of an office on one's 65th birthday and checking into a Florida retirement community with Wilford Brimley and his gang from "Cocoon."

    GREEN ON GRAY: The Collective Experience of New York's Urban Green Spaces
    by Meera Subramanian
    FOR CURRENT ARTICLES, please see:

    Indie Food
    by Sarah DiGregorio

    Growing Up Muslim in America
    by Anju Mary Paul
    It's tough enough being a teenager. But what are the specific challenges faced by teens when they're also Muslims in New York City, and the children of immigrants? How has 9/11 affected the way these children look at their adopted and native countries? How do they define their hyphenated identities? How does their religion affect their social lives? How do they find husbands and wives for themselves? These are the questions I set out to answer...

    Alternative Religion
    by Kate Hawley
    The title "Alternative Religion" begs the question: alternative to what? The so-called mainstream of American religious experience is endlessly diverse, making clean distinctions elusive. I use the word alternative to encompass the new or the merely surprising. I'm particularly interested in how religion finds its way into secular society through an alternative route--via education, social policy, art or media.

    Sects in the City: Modern Jewish Life
    by Raquel Hecker

    by Kirsten Shae Johnson

    by Ian Daly
    I write about everything from business to science, from politics to street art. My stories have appeared in Details, Esquire, The Brooklyn Rail, the NYU Alumni Magazine, and Recount. I am currently assistant editor of Details Magazine.

    The Misfits: Life in the New Gay Margins
    by Claiborne Smith
    Since graduating from NYU's Cultural Reporting & Criticism and Portfolio programs in January 2004, I went to Dallas, Texas to do a six-month reporting fellowship at the Dallas Observer, and then to the Sundance Film Festival in January 2005 to cover the festival for Sundance's new daily paper published during the festival, the Sundance Daily Insider.

    I am now the literary director of the Texas Book Festival in Austin, and writing criticism.

    Dancing in the Streets
    by Amy Zimmer
    I zoom in on details—a young woman's breath as her trainer wraps her hands before entering the ring to spar, the tilt of a tough boy's hat as he hangs out on a street corner waiting for a girl to call, the stingray cowboy boots an anti-art New York gallery owner wears as remnants from his life down south.

    Salvage and Sanitation: Unearthing the Future of Garbage in New York
    by Tess Taylor
    New York, 2002.
    Since the Fresh Kills landfill closed two years ago, the city's been sending 13,000 tons of municipal garbage its citizens produce daily to landfills in Ohio, Virginia, and Pennsylvania by truck Municipal garbage doesn't account for the 13, 000 tons trash hauled away from hotels, restaurants and other private establishments daily. Treating garbage is an expensive problem: In 2001 alone, as the city budget shortfall loomed, the DOT budget hit one billion dollars. The diesel emissions from city garbage trucks are linked to an urban asthma epidemic. Yet the city's trash reduction plans have so far been equally expensive and dysfunctional. As cities like San Francisco move towards zero waste, New York's garbage budget—20 percent of the city's fiscal revenue, continues to grow.