NY City Lens illuminates the rich and varied life of New York City—borough by borough, neighborhood by neighborhood, one good story at a time. It is produced by students at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. The site is staffed by students in the City Newsroom class taught by professors Juan Arredondo, Christine McKenna, Nushin Rashidian, Chuck Stevens and Bob Wheelock.
Aina de Lapparent Alvarez
Aina is a Catalan reporter specializing in solutions journalism. She has reported from Lebanon to Queens, covering religious practices, food production, climate change, and Middle East society. She is fluent in four languages and can hold a conversation in four others. Her work has appeared in The Lebanon Daily Star, Smart Mouth, and El Diari de la Sanitat.
Elizabeth was born and raised on Manhattan’s Upper West Side before moving across the country to earn her Bachelor of Arts in English and Politics from Occidental College in Los Angeles. She previously worked for Occidental’s weekly student-run paper and interned for DAME Magazine. She is interested in covering education, culture, public health and politics.
Luke covers Manhattan for NY City Lens. He’s a lifelong New Yorker interested in social services, housing, zoning, and the West Side. His work has also appeared in Curbed. In a past life he trained to become a historian and studied urban planning and discrimination in the postwar United Kingdom. He speaks Irish and some Spanish.
Danielle graduated from University of California — Irvine with a Bachelor of Arts in Literary Journalism and Dance. Prior to grad school, she worked as an editor and staff writer with the university’s newspaper for the City News section. She also interned with several local governmental entities in various capacities, including a San Diego Congressman and a state Assemblywoman.
Riley is a multimedia journalist covering science and technology for NY City Lens. Even though she has moved cross-continentally a few times, Riley considers herself a Texan. She worked previously as an intern for The New York Times, an editor for Odyssey, a reporter for D Magazine, and a news talk show host. Currently, Riley covers entertainment for NBCUniversal. A recovering pre-law student and humanities fanatic, Riley studied journalism, Spanish and communications at Texas A&M University.
As a reporter for NY City Lens, Michael Flores covers veterans issues and the community of Queens. A New York native, Michael has settled in California for over a decade to chase love, returning to New York to attend Columbia. There, he specializes in video and documentary filmmaking. Prior to Columbia, Michael was a reporter for Pacifica News 90.7FM in Los Angeles and wrote for The War Horse. He served seven years as an Army medic. He deployed to Iraq from 2006 to 2007 to provide aid to an infantry unit.
Eleonora is a journalist originally from Rome, Italy. Her reporting focuses on human rights, social issues, and business. She graduated with a degree in international affairs specializing in philosophy at John Cabot, the American University of Rome. Eleonora has worked as a United Nations correspondent at New York City-based online newspaper La Voce di New York. Her goal is to start a foreign correspondent career in the future. She enjoys exploring new places and is also passionate about philosophy and ancient Greek theater.
Juliette graduated in journalism from Georgia State University with the goal of specializing in social issues, lifestyle and local news. Raised in France, she developed a taste for non-fiction writing, which prompted her to become a contributor for upcoming book “A Trail Guide to Reykjavik, Iceland” and work for her university’s newspaper. She also worked as a foreign correspondent for German news outlet OVAL media and interned at the Economist during the pandemic while traveling through a dozen of states with her fiancé. A hiking lover and Oscar Wilde enthusiast, Juliette hopes to gain experience on the field to craft human-interest stories and draw an accurate portrayal of everyday America.
Soo Min Kim
Soo Min is a multimedia journalist covering NYC for NY City Lens. She is from Seoul, South Korea where she hosted and created visual content for the Korea Times(Hankookilbo). She received a BA from Dickinson College in International Business & Management.
Elizabeth is a multimedia journalist originally from New Jersey. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in communication from Wake Forest University, where she served as online managing editor of the university’s newspaper. Before coming to Columbia, Elizabeth worked at NBC News and CNN, where she currently works as a production assistant. She is passionate about covering politics, policy, culture and social issues.
Evelyn is a business journalist, who covers stories in which gender and business intersect. She also covers Asian American affairs. Before coming to Columbia, she examined policies, politics, and world affairs from the lens of feminism as a graduate student. She speaks Korean fluently.
Kaye reports on education and health news. She is from West Hartford, Conn. and when she is not reporting she is spending time with family, friends, and enjoying a refresher from Starbucks.
Niamh is a multimedia journalist from London, United Kingdom. She covers technology, politics and social issues. She’s written for The Guardian and The Bushwick Daily. Before Columbia, she worked in tech, writing bylines for Google Cloud, and was an editor at a Bangladeshi nonprofit. She studied English Literature and Philosophy at Bristol University, where she was features editor for her student newspaper.
Chantal studied journalism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. While there, she founded an art magazine called The Collective. She also worked at The Daily Illini as a designer. She worked as a producer for The 21st, a daily statewide news talk show.
Chantal Andrea Vaca