(Re)Visit: New York, USA

At Cultural Vistas, immersive international experiences are everything; even after they’re over, we continue to learn from them. While new international experiences are not possible right now, we can still learn from our past experiences abroad.

Over the next two weeks, Cultural Vistas will be sharing photos from our alumni through our (Re)Visit series. Each day, we will focus on a different country or U.S. state that transformed them. These photos stay the same, but our perspectives continue to change.

Thank you to our alumni for allowing us to highlight their stunning photography. We hope these photos inspire you to reflect, remember, and #ReVisit your own experiences abroad.

New York, USA

Today, we will #ReVisit New York state, particularly New York City.

New York City is the location of our headquarters, but it is not its usual bustling self these days. As a global hub of business and commerce, New York is normally a popular destination for our international interns. Here are some of their favorite photos of New York to give you a glimpse of this wonderful place.


new york street

Steam gathers on Sixth Avenue

Paul de Cathelineau
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2017)

new york 9/11 memorial

A view of the 9/11 memorial

Paul de Cathelineau
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2017)


new york runner brooklyn bridge

Running on the bridge

Paul de Cathelineau
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2017)


new york pretzel stand

A pretzel vendor at the New York City streets
Paul de Cathelineau
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2017)


new york snow park

A sunset over Central Park

Paul de Cathelineau
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2017)


new york snow black and white

Snow in the park

Marjan Riazi
JED Fellowship (2018)

“After 10 years in sunny Santa Barbara, California, I moved to New York City for graduate school. As a born and raised Minnesotan, I thought I’d handle east coast winters with ease. I was wrong. I spent a lot of my time working as a journalist indoors or trying to find time for warmer destinations in my busy schedule, but two snow boots, four pairs of lost gloves, and one parka later, I was reminded of something: even in the darkest and coldest days, there is always beauty to be found.”


new york flatiron building

The Flatiron Building

Fabienne Michelle Mertens
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)

“Living in New York has given me the opportunity to be surrounded by people who are accepting and not judging. It has helped me to be who I want to be. It has helped to accept me for who I am and have more confidence. I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter what religion, skin color, height, or size you are. Different is ok, it makes us, us. What matters are your actions. I’ve learned to not change myself for anyone, but also to accept people for who they are, and not making them change.”


new york viewfinder

Taking in the city

Fabienne Michelle Mertens
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


new york trash heels

A pair of lost shoes found on a sidewalk on a Monday morning

Hanna Sophia Hoerl
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


new york sunset skyline

New York City at sunset

Seonung Hwang
Korea WEST, 2018

“It was an abnormally warm day of that winter days. Warm and cold breezes that each come from the city of Manhattan and Hudson River were harmonized on Riverside Park. When the sun started to set, the color of dusk, that pinkish and purple glow was constantly deepening. And the glow began to dye the city. I really can say that everything was so harmonized. At that moment I subliminally realize, or rather to say that I made up my mind that I can be too. To me, it was a huge watershed of life in the United States. When the lights of the sky permeated into all around of the New York, the city that I finally can call ‘home’ permeated into me.”


central park violinist

New friends in the park

Yuebing Liang
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


new york chinatown

An architect interprets the New York City landscape 

Santiago Lorenzo
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)

“Every picture taken in this city has become a story to reflect on. As an architect working in New York, the cityscape became a true teller of the meaning of history and urban legacy.”


new york one world trade center

A view of the city skyline

Santiago Lorenzo
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


subway violinist

A subway musician plays the violin

Ho Won Kim
Korea WEST, 2018


brooklyn cafe

A busy café in New York City

Ho Won Kim
Korea WEST, 2018


new york park buildings trees

The contrast of the city and nature in Central Park

Daniel Wydra
JED Fellowship (2018)


hudson river park dancers new york

Watching artists in Hudson River Park

So Tsui Midori
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


new yorker and his dog

Dan and his dog

Florian Zeißig
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)

“Meet Dan. Who is Dan you might ask? He is the guy in the photo. On my first day in NYC, I met him right after I had dropped off my luggage at the place I was staying in Harlem: A formerly affordable neighborhood adjacent to the Upper West Side. Not expecting anything, I exited the apartment building and Dan asked me if I lived there now. I had never met him, nevertheless, I was happy to talk to him and told him that I was staying with a friend at the building, which he also lived in.

Then the transformative experience happened. He asked me if I could take a photo of him and his dog and later send him the result in an email. He did not own a smartphone. I gladly agreed. While we were shooting this photo he explained to me that he has been living in this neighborhood for ages already and sadly realized the changes it is going through. The crane in the background marks the place where a new 50 story building was being built and soon would change the very cityscape he knew and loved. He told me how NYC was changing, how people like Dan, who was part of the blood running through the city’s veins, suffered from the transformation in architecture as those transformations would bring new people into his neighborhood who, because of their buying power, would push people like Dan away. Dan wanted a photo from before the erection of the building, which I took, and would later get someone else to take a photo of him once the new high riser was build in order to show to the council members of the city what is wrong with building higher and higher in neighborhoods that used to be affordable. His activism impressed me and also his persona.

For me, this photo represents the grievances that gentrification causes. It also represents a New York City that people might not see on a first visit. I advocate to listen to people like Dan and not to neglect their voices because of the way they appear. I learned he was an opera singer back in his day. One morning I woke up and heard Dan’s beautiful voice echoing through the back street of the building, I knew it was him and I knew it was a voice of New Yorker that doesn’t accept to be muted by the guys who make the calls.”


upstate bench

A view of upstate New York

Haykaz Bagratyan
Edmund S. Muskie Internship Program, 2018


new york fireworks black and white

Fireworks over the night sky

Mengzhu Jiang
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


statue of liberty

Sunset over the statue of liberty

Philibert de La Forest Divonne
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


girl standing in times square

Discovering a city that’s full of surprises

Siti Fuadilla Alchumaira
YSEALI Generation: Oceans, 2016

“As a Muslim, traveling in New York got me to understand that the fear I thought was real had diminished by personal experience because New York is not as bad as what media say towards Muslims and minorities. New York is just a big city full of surprises. Everyone is welcome.”


times square

Skylines, incredibly busy streets, colorful billboards, and diverse people.

Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


vintage cars

Vintage cars line a city street

Hanna Sophia Hoerl
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)

“I truly became a part of this metropolitan, melting-pot city that for some reason felt quite detached and entirely different from the rest of the United States, but then again so very American at the same time. It felt like all of New York is a stage and all of the city’s people are merely actors. For a brief moment, it was my time to perform on this stage, and be a part of the play, tell my story. To be a part of the buzz of the big apple really shaped and changed my perspective of New York. The city made me appreciate individual people’s stories more and wonder which direction everyone is going. Proud to say that I feel a little bit like a New Yorker now, not like a mere tourist or at least to understand what it feels like to live and wander through the maze of concrete Jungle like NY, where you encounter and experience insane, weird, beautiful or inspiring things every day.”


theater scene

A crowded opera house

Carina Zacher
Train USA, Internship/Trainee Program (2018)


Are you remembering, reflecting, and (re)visiting your own experiences abroad? Share your story with us.

Latest posts by Anthony Naglieri (see all)

Anthony Naglieri

For more than 15 years, Anthony has stewarded integrated communications for a diverse set of institutions – spanning everything from a major U.S. military academy and professional/collegiate sports entities to higher education and internally-minded NGOs and causes. Connect on LinkedIn

View all posts by Anthony Naglieri

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