*This article was originally published in October 2019 and has been updated and republished. If you’d like to learn more about academic opportunity at NYU, check out nyu.edu or read more here on MeetNYU!


At NYU, you can choose from more than 230 majors and minors across three campuses—and once you declare a major, you’re not limited to the classes in your program. Add the ability to study at 14 other academic locations around the world, and you have infinite ways to customize your educational experience and explore a world of academic opportunity. Read on to see how two students took advantage of NYU’s academic options to create a one-of-a-kind education.

“Having the ability to take classes across schools really helped me achieve the well-rounded education I was looking for.”
—Haley Ghesani

Portrait of student Haley Ghesani, surrounded by books, hand-drawn stars, and a pencil.

Business with concentrations in finance and management and organizations, Stern School of Business

Politics, College of Arts and Science (CAS)

1. Haley’s Plan
“As a senior in high school, I knew I was interested in studying management and organizations. However, I did not have a strong idea of what I would do with my business degree after graduation.”

2. Figuring It Out
“At first, I thought combining my passion for management with technical skills in finance at Stern would round out my education. But I’ve always liked writing, so I wanted to find a way to further explore that strength. When I took a class called Texts and Ideas with a section on democracy, knowledge, and equality, I found I was genuinely interested in the content and pretty good at writing, analyzing, and synthesizing concepts. That’s what gave me the idea to pursue a minor in Politics at CAS.”

3. Making It Happen
“The writing in my business courses was very different from the writing in my politics classes. The assignments ranged from historical analysis to research projects and policy recommendations. I definitely would not have discovered my love for policy and interest in international development had I not explored classes outside my major.”

4. What’s Next
“My dream job is to work at the World Bank, creating policy and helping to build the private sector in developing countries. After graduation, I will work in management consulting at Accenture, where I hope to explore international development by working on projects that bring digital technologies to a variety of business, government, and nonprofit organizations.”

Portrait of Michael Leonetti, surrounded by hand-drawn stars and photos of locations abroad.

Global Liberal Studies with a concentration in politics, rights, and development, Liberal Studies; Spanish, College of Arts and Science

Social and Public Policy, College of Arts and Science and the Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

1. Michael’s Plan
“I decided on Global Liberal Studies because I wanted to spend two years abroad, and I knew I was interested in human rights. Beyond that, I didn’t have a detailed idea of where my studies would take me.”

2. Figuring It Out
“During the fall of my first year, the European refugee crisis reached its most horrifying peak, so I decided to turn my academic path toward forced migration and humanitarian work. Over the summer, I joined a first-response team in Lesbos, Greece. The next summer I returned there as an NYU Gallatin Global Fellow in Human Rights to study innovative refugee camps and the unique needs of LGBTQ+ refugees. This led me to research my senior thesis, in which I focused on the displacement of LGBTQ+ people from Latin America and the Caribbean and the United States’ system for processing their asylum applications.”

3. Making It Happen
“The ability to study across schools was critical. My majors and minor were all in different schools, yet each complemented the others. They helped me fill in the gaps in my knowledge and see the same information through three distinct lenses. Studying abroad during my junior year at NYU Madrid made completing my second major relatively easy. It also improved my Spanish language skills, which prepared me to intern as a legal assistant at a nongovernmental organization supporting LGBTQ+ refugees and asylum seekers in Madrid.”

4. What’s Next
“After graduating from NYU, I’ll enter the Master of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies program at Oxford University. I decided to pursue this degree after working at the International Rescue Committee, an international humanitarian organization based in New York City, and seeing the innovative research being done there. After graduate school, I plan to go to law school to study immigration and asylum law or go back to working in the humanitarian and development world.”

Cindy Nowicki is a writer and content strategist in NYU’s Office of Marketing Communications. She enjoys meeting with students to learn about their experiences and telling the stories of all the wonderful things happening at NYU. Cindy holds a BA in English from the University of Richmond and studied English literature at the University of Bristol, England. A Brooklyn native, she still discovers new things about New York City every day. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two young sons.