New York is brimming with universities, colleges and small, focused schools where students reap the benefits of being in an artistic, culinary and cultural hotspot. Why not learn a little something while you’re here? As a traveler, it’s a great way to gain a different perspective on the city.
The Learning Annex (Map p126; 212-371-0280; www.learningannex.com; 16 W 53rd St btwn Fifth & Sixth Aves, Midtown East; classes $40-250), an NYC institution, is infamous for its thick catalogues, available for free in street boxes, and its wacky range of classes – feng shui, soap making, in-line skating, real estate, how to fall in love. Classes, often taught by celebs that have included Donald Trump and Suze Orman, are generally held over the course of one day or an evening.
Media Bistro (Map p126; 212-389-2000; www.media bistro.com; 475 Park Ave S btwn 31st & 32nd Sts, Midtown East; classes $65-499), a networking and educational organization for journalists and other writers, provides not only six-week courses but three-hour seminars that cover topics from Intro to Travel Writing to Pitching Your Novel and How to Write Essays about Sex. It is the perfect opportunity to rub elbows with those in the New York writers scene.
Demonstration classes at Bouley Test Kitchen enable you to learn from celeb chef David Bouley, with a single lesson ($175) that includes both food and wine tasting, plus photographs of his creations.
De Gustibus Cooking School (www.degustibusinc.com) at Macy’s offers an impressive lineup of lessons at its in-store facility; subjects range from TV Inspirations (Rachael Ray and Lee Anne Wong of Top Chef were recent guests) and Absolutely Asian (which featured noted chef Floyd Cardoz teaching a lesson) to Knife Skills and Kosher Entertaining. Single classes average $90 per person.
You can learn to make a film in just two days at Cooper Union (Map p104; 212-353-4195; www.cooper.edu; 30 Cooper Sq btwn Fifth & Sixth Sts, East Village; $390) with Independent Filmmaking: A Crash Course, part of the Professional Development program, which takes you through writing, directing, producing and marketing.
Teach English abroad with an i-to-i TEFL Course
If you’ve ever thought about living and working abroad, then why not teach English as a foreign language (TEFL)? It could be the key to funding your travels and experiencing new cultures in a totally new way. You don’t need teaching experience or even the ability to speak the local language – although you might learn it while you’re out there.