For the Frustrated Pratties

Hello fellow Pratties! The year is finally coming to an end, and all of our hard work is paying off. With that being said, I would just like to give you guys a few tips I have on what I have learned over these past few semesters at Pratt, specifically concerning class issues. Whether it’s an issue with a specific professor, a class syllabus, or a change within a department, students do have a say in their education and they have a right to question whether what they are subjected to is conducive to their educational growth. They should know how to go about bringing change or clarification within their department without feeling as though they will be persecuted for doing so, especially when they are paying customers.  Here are some steps for how to go about handling class issues at Pratt.


1. Approach your Professor.

The first thing you should do when an issue with a class arises is communicate with your professor. You can take the time to write them a well thought out email outlining your concerns, which will not only make you seem more professional, but will leave a paper trail just in case things start to get messy. No matter how angry or confused you may be, try not to speak with an accusatory tone in your email. This can only lead to more conflict.


2. Talk to your Advisor

If things do not go  well with your Professor, continue to speak in a professional manner with another faculty member, such as your advisor. Set up an appointment, email them the same concerns you sent your professor, and talk it out. It could all be a simple miscommunication, and your Advisor should provide you with some good advice as to how to deal with the situation.


3. Speak to your Department Chair

This may seem a bit more intimidating than the previous 2 steps. However, your department chair is there to improve the department and give you the best education possible. The only issue here is scheduling an appointment, because Chairs are very busy people. But I am sure that if you approach the issue in a professional way, continue to email them with your  concerns outlined, and focus on the issue at hand in your meeting, your issue can be resolved. Bring classmates with you, or get their input about your class in writing so that there is concrete evidence that your issue is real and not just a personal bias.


4. Speak with your Dean

Just like your Department Chair, the Dean of your school is there to make sure that Pratt is providing the best for its students. Making an appointment with the Dean is a bit more difficult than the previous 3 steps, however it can be very helpful because they are in direct communication with the department chair and may be able to clarify the situation even further. As long as you have a serious, rational issue with a class and you aren’t simply whining about a teacher you don’t get along with, you can achieve your goal of resolving the conflict.


And remember, it’s best to nip class issues in the bud early on. The sooner you do something about it, the sooner it can be fixed, and the more you get out of the $60,000 education you came to New York for!


Best of luck next semester




Spring 2014 Tips & Tricks for Freshman

Hey guys! So Spring is just about here, and while midterms are over, there’s still a couple months of school ahead of us. Here are some tips and tricks for freshman to keep focused and push through till the end of the semester :)

  • Effective Time Management- While it’s tempting to put off all your work until Saturday so you can go take a nap out on the lawn, it’s really better to get as much as you can out of the way before the weekend so that you can relax and give yourself a much needed break. Creativity does not come easily to a person who feels burnt out, so keep track of the time you have and make sure to block out a few hours to relax.

  • Work in groups- This doesn’t always work for everyone, but I find that going to studio with a few other people really does motivate you to get your work done. We’re at a point in the semester where everyone just wants to be done, but we have to keep on truckin’ until the semester has actually ended.

  • Take good notes!- I know as well as any other distracted freshman that taking notes is difficult, especially in classes that are more visual than anything else. But by taking good notes on demos or lectures, you have a reference to go back to while working on a project or a paper without having to rely on a classmate or response from a teacher. Use multiple colors, organize your notes on your computer, do whatever it takes to make it so that you are focused during class and it will translate into your work.

-Bianca Norris, Peer Advisor

Brooklyn Night Bazaar!

The Peer Advisors have struck the Brooklyn Night Bazaar! You may have seen our ad in the latest edition of the Pratt Digest (if you haven’t, you should check it out). But even so, you’re still not sure whether it’s worth venturing out of your room (or studio). Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. We scoped it out already and have this comprehensive guide to help you decide.

Pretty and Neon

The Williamsburg warehouse the Bazaar is in looks super cool with its décor of paper lanterns and neon lights. Granted, it’s not a very large space, and it can get pretty crowded, especially in the food/sitting area (claustrophobes beware). In my opinion, the pictures make it look bigger than it is, so keep that in mind.


The Goods

So the majority of the bazaar is made up of vendors selling various wares. Some of things you’ll find are jewelry, clothing, art prints, and some decorative items. Think of like a physical Etsy sale. That said, these aren’t your typical flea market stalls. Everything is handcrafted, artisan, or otherwise independently produced, and the prices reflect this (and then some). But if you’re willing to spend a bit, you’ll probably be able to find something you like.


So you’ve checked out all the vendors and bought some things you’re pretty sure you could make yourself, what now? First off, there are different live musical acts depending on the night and time (I was too early). There’s also a mini-golf course that looks like tons of fun. It costs $5 per person, which isn’t too bad. I didn’t play, but I think mini-golf is pretty self-explanatory (it’s golf, but smaller). Okay, you’re putted out, what next? The back section has a variety of food stalls and you can buy alcohol from a few different places inside (IDs are checked and bracelets given at the door). I get it, you’re stuffed. Now what? Well, that’s it.



Still not sure if it’s worth getting our of bed? Fair enough. Here’s what I think. If you’re going to go, bring cash (cards are a no-go). Entrance is free, but that’s about it. If you’re looking for some cool new things you can’t find anywhere else, this could be your chance (if you’re willing to pay). Just for scale, I was able to see everything and circle the place many times relatively quickly. I was there for about an hour, and that was definitely stretching it, so don’t expect an all-night affair. I wasn’t interested in buying anything, and I did get a little bored, but I went with a few friends and had a good time regardless. I would definitely recommend looking online to see if a particular musical act you like is playing, as that would certainly liven it up.

All things considered, I wouldn’t go cancelling plans to make it, but it is every weekend and it’s more fun than sitting in your room and binging on Netflix and snacks.


I told you the lights are pretty. [all photo credits to Sarah Aristizabal, fellow Peer Advisor]




Home Stretch Fall 2013

It is absolutely crazy how fast this semester has gone by. As we come across final deadlines, here are some tips from Pratt students to help you along.

1. Be on top of your work. The worst is when something is not due and you put it off. Give yourselves…

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Registration, it is happening

So lovely people,

It is that time of year again, where we fight for the classes we most want. Below is a message from the registrar about registration:


Thursday, Oct…

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So I had never actually heard of this all-organic restaurant before. I was on my way to a Chipotle in Chelsea when my friend noticed this place on the same street. The decor was super cool (you can check a bunch of pictures on their website) and the prices were comparable so we decided to try something new.

Oh man, let me tell you how great of a decision that was. First of all, this place takes organic seriously. Not only are the burgers organic, but so are all of the dipping sauces and drinks. You won’t find any Heinz or Coca-Cola here, only their personally made organic substitutes, which happen to taste awesome.

You can choose one of their presets or order in a build-your-burger fashion, choosing the meat, bun, cheese, and all the toppings. Not only do they offer beef and chicken burgers, but you can even get bison or ostrich. I kept it simple and ordered a preset beef cheeseburger with bacon and some other things. No wonder this place has been on the Zagat Top 10 Burgers in NYC for the last 3 years, because it was happiness on a bun. Flavorful and fresh, not to mention the food arrived surprisingly quickly.

The three of us there also shared a basket of french fries that came with three different dipping sauces. One of them was curry ketchup, another was some kind of special mayo, but all three were delicious.

I highly recommend this restaurant. I know I’ll be going back. To top it off, it was reasonably priced, the final bill being below $50 for three people. I ate at the 153 8th Ave. location in Chelsea, but I’ve heard the quality is consistent everywhere. Check out their website for more info and pics:


(this was actually my friend’s burger, I was too hungry to worry about photos)

What the F*ck…this is good coffee


It has taken me three years to walk into WTF Coffee Lab. Why has it taken me so long? I kick myself to this day. Now being my senior year, I have made it my mission to find small, local places around campus that I can work on my thesis in. I have to get away from Pratt sometimes and just veg, relax, and not think of the million other things waiting for me to be crossed off in my student planner. 

Located one block from Fort Greene Park between Clermont Ave, and Adelphi St. take a step back in the past delivering mouth watering coffee using old-fashioned drip processes. They also have coffee from all over the world,  smoothies, tea, and the most ‘oh my god’ this is amazing hot chocolate!

You pay an extra buck or two than you would at a cheaper coffee place, but it worth it. The staff is always super knowledgeable and helpful in figuring out what drink will satisfy your school-work blues. 

I hate to share my Sunday morning ritual, but I can’t let this place go unnoticed any longer. 

Their hours are from 7am-7pm 

check out their website here:

I can smell the aroma from here….yummm

Brooklyn Book Festival

The Brooklyn Book Festival is this Sunday, September 22nd! This is a seriously awesome event that I highly recommend. There will be readings going on from 10am-6pm on Sunday.

There are also “Bookend Events”, which are going on all over Brooklyn this week. They’re a great way to get out to a reading if you’re totally booked (hah) on Sunday.

The festival itself is at Borough Hall and Plaza in downtown Brooklyn. For full details including directions, festival map, list of authors, and schedules go here:

Promo Video:

Really though, you should go. (I’ll be there)

Local Bookstores

So you need a book. Maybe it’s for class, maybe you just want some supplemental reading. You don’t want to use Amazon because they’re a tyrannical corporation that is detrimental to the entire literary industry (or you need the book for class next week and can’t wait for it ship). Either way, we’ve got your back. NYC has some of greatest options in the world by way of independent and used bookstores. Here you’ll find a ton, many of which specialize in art and design books. I’ll continue to update this list as is necessary. (but seriously, Amazon is evil)

Art Resources Transfer, Inc. 526 W 26 Street #614, New York, NY 10001 (212) 255-2919 Art Resources Transfer, Inc., founded by Bill Bartman in 1987, is a non-profit organization committed to documenting and supporting artists’ voices and work, and to making these voices accessible to the broadest possible public by establishing innovative methods of distribution and access.

Bergen Street Comics 470 Bergen Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217 (718) 230-5600 Located in Park Slope, this comics-focused bookstore is dedicated to excellent customer service and hosts many comics-related events.

BookCourt 163 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 875-3677 An excellent independent bookstore in Cobble Hill that hosts frequent readings and events.

Brooklyn Museum Shop 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11238 (718) 638-5000 Books and gift items at the Brooklyn Museum.

The Community Bookstore 143 Seventh Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215 (718) 783-3075 One of Brooklyn’s oldest independent bookstores, located in Park Slope.

Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Bookstore 2 E 91st Street (at 5th Avenue), New York, NY 10128 (212) 849-8355 Architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, textiles, costume and fashion, decorative arts, classic children’s titles, garden design, and select titles that reflect changing exhibits at the museum.

Desert  Island 540 Metropolitan Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211 (718) 388-5087 Excellent shop for comic books, graphic novels, art books, zines, novelty items and a lot of author events.

Greenlight Bookstore 686 Fulton Street (corner of South Portland), Brooklyn, NY 11217 (718) 246-0200 Located a short walk from Pratt’s Brooklyn campus, this recently-opened independent literary bookstore promises to be a great addition to the neighborhood.

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum Bookstore 1071 Fifth Ave, New York, NY 10028 (at 89th Streeet) (212) 423-3615 Museum publications, books and catalogs on twentieth century art, architecture, photography and film; posters, cards, slides.

Heights Books 120 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 624-4876 One of the best used bookstores in Brooklyn, specializes in art, design, photography, philosophy, and history.

International Center for Photography Bookstore 1133 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036 (at 43rd St) (212) 860-1777 Current photography books, catalogs, posters, and postcards.

Kinokuniya 1073 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10018 (212) 869-1700 Japanese art and architecture.

Melville House Publishing 145 Plymouth Street (at Pearl Street), Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 722-9204 Small publishing house and bookstore featuring only independent press books, Melville House also hosts frequent readings and other literary events.

Metropolitan Museum of Art Bookstore 1000 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10028 (212) 570-3726 In-print museum publications. Current art books and catalogs, including many with foreign titles; posters, collectables, slides, cards.

OAN Oceanie/Afrique Noire 15 W 39th Street, 2nd floor, New York, NY 10018 (212) 840-8844 Art book specialists dealing with Africa, Oceana, Southeast Asia, Asia, the Middle E and the Americas.

Perimeter 21 Cleveland Place, New York, NY 10012 (212) 334-6559 Books, posters and postcards devoted to architecture, furniture, and design.

powerHouse Books 37 Main Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 666-3049 Combination publishing house, bookstore and performance venue that specializes in  fine art, documentary, pop cultire and fashion.

Printed Matter Bookstore 195 Tenth Avenue, New York, NY 10011 (212) 925-0325 Modern and contemporary art, especially artists’ books and art magazines.

Rizzoli 31 W 57th Street, New York, NY 10019 (212) 759-2424 New books on fine arts, design, interiors, architecture, photography.

Rocketship 208 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 797-1348 An excellent comic book, graphic novel and cartoon art store in Cobble Hill.

Spoonbill & Sugartown 218 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211 (718) 387-7322 Predominantly art and design books, current and out-of-print, rare titles, collector’s editions, local zines and artist books.

St. Marks Bookshop 31 3rd Avenue, New York, NY 10003 (212) 260-7853 Modern and contemporary art and architecture and criticism, Avant-garde titles, art magazines.

Strand Bookstore 828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003 (212) 473-1452 The largest second hand bookstore in the U.S. Emphasis on art and rare books.

Ursus Books Ltd. 981 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10021 (212) 772-8787 Out of print books and museum catalogs, fine illustrated books.

WORD 126 Franklin Street, Brooklyn, NY 11222 (718) 383-0096 Located in Greenpoint, WORD stocks literary fiction, non-fiction, stationery, children’s books and a nice selection of journals.

689 9th Ave # 1, New York, NY
When I’m looking for a good place to eat that’s inexpensive and in Manhattan is a challenge.  Although I did find one! It is a little Restaurant called Jing.  They are an Asian Restaurant that has Japanese, Chinese and Thai.  It’s great to go to with people who are indecisive.  The best part is the staff they have.  They are really friendly and get to know you. I highly recommend this place!


689 9th Ave # 1, New York, NY

When I’m looking for a good place to eat that’s inexpensive and in Manhattan is a challenge.  Although I did find one! It is a little Restaurant called Jing.  They are an Asian Restaurant that has Japanese, Chinese and Thai.  It’s great to go to with people who are indecisive.  The best part is the staff they have.  They are really friendly and get to know you. I highly recommend this place!

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