Category Archives: Accomplishments

Travel Grant Winner!

We are delighted to announce that Faye Lu has won the Draper travel grant for the September 1  – October 31 drawing period. This $200 award will help defray the cost of traveling to the Film and History conference in Madison, Wisconsin where she will present her paper “Creating ‘the World’ in Exile: Women Without Men by Shirin Neshat”.

Congratulations, Faye!

Our next drawing will be on Monday, January 5th. If you will be travelling for an upcoming conference, consider applying! You can submit your application any time between now and December 31st, 2014.

The application and more information can be found here.


Former Draper Admin Larissa Kyzer Writes for the Island Review

Many readers of this blog may remember Larissa Kyzer from when she was Draper’s Program Administrator for several years, immediately preceding Georgia Lowe and bringing a very special kind of cheer to the office.

Two years ago, Larissa moved to Iceland to study Icelandic on a Fulbright scholarship. While attending University there, Larissa picked up a writing gig at a local English-language paper, the Reykjavik Grapevine, where she notably wrote about swimming in the icy Icelandic sea. More recently, she’s been added as a regular correspondent on the Island Review, “an online magazine dedicated to great writing and visual art that comes from, is inspired by, celebrates or seeks to understand the extraordinary appeal of islands, as places and as metaphors.”

Here is an exerpt from her first post:

No matter how open and adventurous you are when you move to a new country, no matter how much prior knowledge you have about the place, no matter how intentional and premeditated your arrival: integration in a new culture is a journey. And kind of a long one, at that. I’ve been here in Iceland for just over two years now and I’m starting my third year studying Icelandic as a Second Language at the university-level (that’s the whole reason I came, actually). And although it’s often been something of an uphill battle, my partner and I have been very happy here. We’ve made lives for ourselves in Reykjavík—the nation’s single urban hub, home to more than two thirds of the total population—and have had opportunities that would have been completely and utterly impossible in the crush of in New York City, where we previously lived for ten years.

Moreover, in my time here, I’ve picked up a fair amount of local habits. I drink squeeze boxes of kókó mjólk (chocolate milk) with frankly alarming frequency, despite the fact that when I arrived, I couldn’t stand milk and wasn’t really a fan of chocolate, either. I wear a traditional Icelandic lopapeysa sweater. I get antsy if there is no intermission during a film at the movie theater. Swimming outdoors during a snow storm doesn’t faze me (the pools are geothermally-heated, after all, and anyway, I’ve started winter sea swimming, too). And, like any born-and-bread Icelander, I now understand that umbrellas are not only futile in the country’s gale force winds, they are also symbolic of man’s inability to cope with slightly inconvenient weather patterns.

And yet, although I’ve adopted a variety of Icelandic tendencies and adapted in other, perhaps more significant, ways as well, I still experience a sense of distance and remove here in Iceland, a sense of being outside.

Read the entire post here. And if you’re interested in following more of Larissa’s adventures or enjoy reading about Americans abroad, you can follow her blog, Eth and Thorn.

Congratulations, Larissa! We love reading your work!

Part-Time Job For Students @ OATS

Attention Draper Students:

Kimberly Brennsteiner (Draper Alum, Class of ’07) is the director of programs at a great (and growing) nonprofit called OATS (Older Adults Technology Services). They are growing quickly and are seeking diverse, creative, and flexible trainers. Kimberly says, “I’m always happy to have another Draperite around – we tend to be creative and hardworking!”

The job description and responsibilities are included here:

Older Adults Technology Services (OATS), a rapidly expanding nonprofit organization, seeks smart and flexible trainers to teach computer classes to senior citizens at its pioneering center, Senior Planet Exploration Center, as well as in community-based technology labs around the five boroughs. This position is a unique opportunity for a passionate and dedicated individual. Using a proven curriculum, trainers teach classes to seniors, sometimes with assistance from volunteers and other interns. Classes typically meet twice a week and cover topics such as basic computing, Microsoft Office applications, trending technologies, social media and many more.

This position requires solid proficiency in common software applications and devices, but even more important is a great personality for working with older adults. A successful candidate will possess a high degree of patience, flexibility, creativity, and problem-solving ability, along with a sense of humor and a strong commitment to social change. Spanish language proficiency is a major plus.


  • Teaching computer classes and other technologies using the OATS curriculum and approach
  • Coordinating with site staff
  • Site visits
  • Creating a comfortable and supportive learning environment
  • Collecting surveys and evaluations
  • Data entry in Salesforce database
  • Supervising volunteers
  • Maintaining professionalism at all times
  • Ability to travel throughout all five boroughs around New York City


  • Excellent teaching, speaking and communication skills
  • Competence with computers, the internet, and common technologies/devices a must
  • Ability to communicate technical information clearly
  • Experience working with seniors, youth, or human-service organizations
  • Flexibility, patience, and a sense of humor
  • Regular email and cell phone contact
  • Ability to work independently and as a training team
  • Superior time-management skills
  • Spanish language or Mandarin/Cantonese proficiency a plus

Schedule is flexible. Evening hours are possible. Car is a plus as it makes traveling easier, but is not a requirement. Hourly rates range from $25-$30hr., and commensurate with experience. We are a New York City based nonprofit with a small staff that is dedicated, supportive, and friendly. We are looking for someone who is excited about our mission to harness technology to change the way we age and has potential to grow with us over the long term.

More details and instructions on how to apply can be found here:

August 25 at the Brooklyn Brainery: The History of the American Freak Show

This coming Monday, Draperite Anni Irish will be teaching a class at the Brooklyn Brainery on the history of the American Freak Show. Come one, come all!

August 25, 6:30 – 8:00 PM
The Brooklyn Brainery
190 Underhill Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11238
Full details available here.


TONIGHT! West Coast Cocktails: An Oral History

Draper Alumna Shana Farrell will be hosting a cocktail hour to raise funds for the The Center for Oral History of the Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley. $1 from each drink will be donated to the project and a raffle will be held. Stop by and say hello!

Wednesday, August 20
@ the Shanty
79 Richardson Street
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Contact Shana at sfarrell[at]