About NY City Lens
NY City Lens is a news website produced by students at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. The site is staffed by students in the Reporting & Writing class taught by professors Lennart Bourin and Dody Tsiantar with assistance and advice from professors Kerry Donahue, Lars Hoel, Susan Schwartz and Thomas Xenakis.
Mohamed Al Shaaban (Dr. Mo) reports from Hunts Point, Bronx for NY City Lens. Mohamed is a Fulbright Scholarship recipient. Born and raised in the Bahrain, Mohamed went to Med School and received his MD in 2009. He also received a Bachelor’s in Medical Research from the University of Manitoba in 2006. Prior to Columbia, Mohamed worked as a surgeon. He has worked as a news anchor and reporter on Bahrain Television and Radio. Coming from his drive to combine his two passions together, Mohamed hosted and produced his own health show which aired on Bahrain TV, called ‘Healthy Minutes’. Mohamed is interested in reporting on health issues, but also has a soft spot for International Politics. When not fishing for a story, you will probably find him socializing in a Hookah Lounge somewhere in NYC.
@malshaaban | firstname.lastname@example.org
Sana Bég reports from Elmhurst, Queens for NY City Lens. She is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University where she studied broadcast journalism and international relations. Sana has worked as a journalist for 10 years in upstate NY–as a reporter and producer for the NPR affiliate in Syracuse and as a news anchor and producer for a television network in Buffalo. Most recently, she taught journalism at a university in conflict-ridden Kashmir. Sana helped set up the region’s first community radio project, where she trained and provided editorial guidance to members. She also worked as an editor for a news magazine in Kashmir. During her time in Kashmir, she also helped produce content for Al Jazeera English’s website. Sana is interested in international
Harman Boparai Harmandeep Singh Boparai (Harman) reports from the Prospect Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn for NY City lens. Harman was born and brought up in Amritsar, Punjab in India, where he went to medical school. During his medical education he did rotations at the medical schools of Harvard, Yale and Cornell Universities. He worked for a year as a
doctor in India and worked for 3 years for the promotion of rural education in his home state of Punjab. He is interested in being a travelling doctor/journalist and loves partying, backpacking, art, house music, jazz, and at times doing nothing and philosophizing about life & human minds.
@drharmanboparai | email@example.com
Kimberly Brooks reports from West and Central Harlem for NY City Lens. Prior to attending Columbia University, Kimberly received a bachelor degree from Northwestern University. Originally passionate about science and medicine, Kimberly succumbed to her love of storytelling and moved into television production. She began working at the Oprah Winfrey Show including a freelance project at the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy in South Africa. Later, she joined NBCand worked almost four years as a Segment Producer for their lifestyle brand. A free spirit, Kimberly enjoys simplicity, travel, yoga, and satisfying her unusual weekly craving for cornbread.
@kimnikiabrooks | firstname.lastname@example.org
@evanburgos | email@example.com
@reenajade | firstname.lastname@example.org
@madelinemarie24 | email@example.com
Amelia Martyn-Hemphill reports from Bushwick, Brooklyn for NY City Lens. Originally from London, she studied English at Oxford University and graduated in 2010. She has since worked for Scott Free Films on the release of their critically acclaimed documentary ‘Life In A Day’ and on the YouTube/Scott Free ‘Your Film Festival’ as part of the global selection team. She has interned as a broadcast journalist for Russia Today (RT) in Moscow and has also worked as a runner for The BBC, The Weinstein Company and Working Title in London. Her journalistic interests include breaking news, business, arts and culture.
Beth McKernan reports from Astoria, Queens for NY City Lens. From Wales in the UK, Beth was a United World College student before getting her Bachelors degree in English at Oxford University. After Oxford, she moved to New York to study Investigative and Broadcast Journalism at Columbia. Beth served as reporter and editor at Cherwell, Oxford’s independent student newspaper, and has interned at the BBC, The Times of London and the Center for International Media Ethics. She has written and done freelance research for various UK papers as well as blogging on feminist and human rights issues. Beth volunteers for Amnesty International in her spare time and finds coffee to be one of the finer things in life.
@mck_beth | firstname.lastname@example.org
Caroline Pailliez reports from Inwood, Mahattan, for NY City Lens. She is a French expat from Canada who is in love with Quebec culture. After graduating from HEC Montreal in economics in 2010, she worked as a business reporter for Journal de Montreal and Argent for eight months. She also worked as a research assistant for the Centre for Productivity and Prosperity, where she focused on Quebec’s productivity. Although Caroline is interested in covering business news, she is open to everything. For her, behind every story, there is a human story.
@Caropllz | email@example.com
Steve Silva reports from the Financial and Meatpacking Districts of Manhattan. When Steve isn’t reading a thesaurus for fun, watching an English movie with foreign language subtitles turned on in the hopes of learning the basics of a new language, or, well, just writing in the third person, he’s probably out chasing a story. Hailing from Toronto, where he earned his undergrad from Ryerson University, he hopes to challenge and refine his storytelling skills in the Big Apple. Got a story idea? Send him an email.
@SteveCSilva | steve [at] stevesilva.ca
Katherine Theofanous reports from Jackson Heights, Queens for New York City Lens. Originally from Chicago, Katherine came to Columbia Graduate School of Journalism to further develop her story-telling skills. Katherine graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and worked in television production for several well-known production companies in Chicago, including Harpo Studios. Katherine loves travelling and serving in other parts of the world. A recent 4-month journey to South America and a volunteer experience at a Bolivian orphanage sparked her passion for journalism. As a first generation Greek-Cypriot American, Katherine enjoys travelling to Cyprus and when she is not working, Katherine enjoys time with family, friends and a delicious cup of coffee.
@katherinetheofa | Kat2154@columbia.edu
Jefferson Mok reports on the South Bronx for NY City Lens. Born in Hong Kong, he grew up bouncing around the Chicago area. He received his B.A. from Grinnell College in Iowa in 2002, where he studied Philosophy and French. From 2008 to 2012, Jefferson implemented humanitarian aid projects in Burundi, eastern DR-Congo and Rwanda. From 2010, he also hosted and produced Imagine Burundi, an independent weekly radio program. He is keenly interested in rights protections, international affairs and immigrant communities.
@jeffersonmok | firstname.lastname@example.org
Ines de La Cuetara reports from Williamsburg, Brooklyn for NY City Lens. Born in Nice, France, Ines also spent several years living in Miami and Malaga before heading to Montreal for college, where she studied political science at McGill University. It was there, at TVMcGill, that Ines first dabbled with cameras. She gave journalism a try by reporting for the McGill Daily and then interning at Transcontinental, which publishes eight Montreal community papers. Ines eventually went on to intern at CTV Montreal, and just spent her summer working as a production assistant for CNN’s Paris bureau.
@inesdlc | email@example.com