Are you a fan of the macabre? Do you go to the movies to scream? Then the New School's "The Skin Off Your Face: The Anatomy of Horror" (212-229-5600, is the class for you. It begins with classics like King Kong, Frankenstein, and Nosferatu and then shifts to recent films. Topics such as terror and gender are explored through readings and film viewings. The class starts February 5 and runs for 13 sessions.



"Spanking the Monkey: The Strangest Children's Book of the 19th Century Teaches You the Facts of Life—Complete With Singing Vagina"
By Paul Collins

"Re-Rethinking SUNY
New York State's Public Higher Ed Deserves More Money—Not Less"
By John Giuffo

"The Real Estate Job Shuffle: Lost Your Job in Finance? No Problem. For a Small Investment of Time and Money, You Can Be on Your Way to Making a Living in Real Estate."
By Jessica Goldbogen

"Location, Location, Location: CUNY Prof Angus Fletcher Discovers American Poetry's Scenic Overlook"
By Jessica Winter

"Coffee and a Muffin: What Every Student Needs to Know: How to Beat Writer's Block"
By Jorge Morales

"Six Feet Undergraduate: Mortuary Science Can Be a Worthwhile Undertaking"
By Bethany Lyttle

"Haircut 101: Rapunzel, Rapunzel, Let Down Your Long-Held Assumptions"
By Nita Rao


Was your favorite cartoon The Critic? Do you like sitting on your ass and watching movies? NYU's "Becoming a Film Critic" (212-998-7171,, from February 23 through March 29, will teach you how to turn your favorite pastime into something lucrative. You will learn what a reviewer looks for when viewing a film and turn opinions and observations into intelligent, interesting articles. You can be the next Ebert.

Why did Gigli bomb? See how movies are really made and why they fail. NYU's "Behind the Silver Screen" (212-998-7171,, from February 8 through 29, examines current movies and determines what political and strategical forces behind the scenes make a movie soar or fizzle. [Jennifer Holmes]


Funny story. I used to be a millionaire. Honest. I made it all in the Internet boom. Millions. It was fun to be rich; I bought everything in sight. Then, all of the sudden, it was gone. All of it. And I have no idea how. Since I try not to repeat mistakes, I plan on enrolling in "Fundamentals of Personal Financial Planning" at NYU's School of Continuing and Professional Studies (, 212-998-7171) in spring 2004, beginning in February. That way, when I get rich again, I'll know what to do.

If you think about it, investing is a lot like stamp collecting. At first, you only have a few that you might keep in a folder. But then, as you accumulate more, you move them to a book. And then the books fill. And fill. If you're not careful, they can get bent, ripped, or ruined. The key to any collection is organization. The New School's "How to Design Your Own Portfolio" (, 212-229-5600) teaches how to keep your investments organized and safe. The three sessions begin February 25.

Is paying rent getting to be too much of a hassle? Maybe it's time to buy your own building and go from tenant to landlord! At the 92nd Street Y (, 212.415.5500), "Real Estate Planning: Buying a Co-op or Condominium" teaches what to look for "when reading an offering plan and how to assess the financial health of the building. Understand the contract and what a board requires, closing costs and assessing the value of the property, as well as fair housing laws." [Zachary Wagman]


Volunteering is fun, isn't it? Whether it's at a nursing home, hospital, day care center, or homeless shelter, helping others is immensely gratifying. The only problem is, it doesn't always leave much time for travel. Lucky for us, there's the Peace Corps (, 800-424-8580). The Peace Corps is a federally funded agency that offers a variety of programs for volunteers to travel overseas (71 countries!) to assist nonprofits, local governments, communities, schools, health posts, cooperatives, and small businesses in everything from business development to health to education to agriculture to community development. Working with the Peace Corps is a two-year commitment, plus three months language, technical, and cross-cultural training. Benefits include full health insurance, round-trip ticket to your post, 48 days vacation, student loan deferment, and some graduate fellowships. If that's not ideal for a world traveler with a social conscience, then I don't know what is! [Zachary Wagman]


Sure, the French might not be popular right now, but that doesn't mean ordering a French wine or discussing a French film won't impress your friends! The French Institute Alliance Française (212-355-6100, offers language, writing, literature, and film classes along with regular cultural events.

For all the global explorers, continental drifters, and any other sort of world travelers who find themselves having trouble getting their message across, Advanced Communication Services (212-929-0384, offers "foreign accent reduction, regional accent modification, and voice improvement."

I was lucky enough to study abroad and live with a Spanish family for a few months. My Spanish was rusty at first, but by the end of my stay, I was speaking, thinking, eating, drinking, and dreaming in Spanish! For those of you looking to dream in another language, visit Manhattan Language (212-683-5442, [Zachary Wagman]


Wish you knew more about the cultural collisions that led to the blues—not to mention the difference between the sub-genres (Delta, Chicago, Texas, etc.)? New School's "Blues Power: The History and Significance of the Blues" ( is a 12-session, demonstration-heavy lecture class, meeting on Mondays from February 2.

If you're hip to hurdy-gurdy, then ease on into "World Music" at Mannes College of Music (212-580-0210 ext.245, The 15-session course, beginning January 28, serves as an in-depth introduction to the traditional musical cultures of India, Indonesia, Hungary, and more. When you finish the class, you'll be able to listen analytically to unfamiliar sounds from around the globe.

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