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Welcome to New York : how to settle and survive in New York Paperback – January 1, 2001

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But now Welcome to New York advises foreigners on how to enjoy living in New York City and its environs. -- The New York Times

Welcome to New York is a compendium filled with practical tips. -- Crain's New York Business

About the Author

I have a Ph.d. in comparative literature, taught literature and writing at Pace, Hunter and Marymount college as well as e.s.l. I was director of the relocation center at the new york chamber of commerce. I am the president of a relocation consulting company, the american welcome services, I have written a novel - the diamond edge, a play- justice american style and non-fiction- voyage into creativity. I live in n.y.c. with my husband, a gastroenterologist and my ywo sons, the younger son is a two-time olympian in fencing.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 235 pages
  • Publisher: Amer Welcome Services Pr; 5th edition (January 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0961243236
  • ISBN-13: 978-0961243234
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,222,865 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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. International Cinema Education, Inc. was established in January 2003.
. Not-for-profit 501(c) (3) established in March 2005. (New York State
No. 20-97-18; Employee I.D. number: 11-3735587).
. NGO at the United Nations with the Department of Public Information.
(July 2006)
. Department of Education (D.O.E.) of the City of New York, has assigned International
Cinema Education, Org. with a Vendor Code: INT735587 for sale of curriculum and
textbooks. (10/5/11)
. Web site:
. Contact Person: Roberta Seret, President, 212-734-9210. or
. Textbook / Curriculum, World Affairs in Foreign Films: A Global View © (McFarland,
Publishers, 2011); © Registration number TX7-413-683, August 10, 2011, by
Roberta Seret. Web Site:
New York City's Board of Education Vendor Code Number: INT735587 (10/5/11)

Overall Vision: To teach students Global issues through the medium of foreign film.
(1). To use film as a catalyst to facilitate discussions, to teach international events, global finance, cross cultural affairs, and multi-disciplinary subjects.
(2). To encourage students to prepare themselves to compete in a global marketplace.
(3). To expose students to conflict resolution techniques that are inclusive of cultural acceptance and understanding.
(4). To supply teachers with lesson activities that include handouts, pre and post curriculum about films screened and themes discussed, and multi-disciplinary studies.
(5) To offer social, political and economic overviews about international countries by using film, literature and private United Nations briefings.


a. The International Film Festival at the United Nations, (2003-present)
We invite 175 New York public high school students from different schools in the five boroughs to participate in this event, beginning with a one-hour tour of the United Nations and followed by a screening of a foreign film and a Q & A discussion where students can ask questions to the actors, directors, producers and Mission delegates from the film's country of origin. We supply teachers with written literature and handouts for pre and post curriculum about the film, from our text/curriculum, "World Affairs in Foreign Films: A Global View," © so they can continue their discussion the next day in the classroom.
The Foreign Missions of the United Nations have been very committed to participate in this program. They send members of the Mission to answer the students' questions pro bono for Q & A's, supply films to facilitate the most appropriate selection, and contribute to the curriculum development with material.
Film companies like Miramax, Fox, Fine Line, Warner and Weinstein Brothers have all offered us with premieres and actors, directors and producers for Q & A's.
As of 2011, we have invited more than 10,000 NYC public high schools to our free events.

b. Filmmakers and Professionals are involved:
At the United Nations program we have had the following guests moderate the post screening Q and A discussions:
. Mira Nair, director of "Namesake"
. Gavin Hood, director of "Tsotsi"
. Presley Chewagne, actor, "Tsotsi"
. Terence Malick, director, and Pocahantas, actress, "The New World"
. Maysoon Pachachi, director, "Return to the Land of Wonders: Baghdad"
. Vita Zaheer, director, and Kate Wood, producer, "Return to Afghanistan"
. Julie Fontaine, Director Press, Miramax
. Sara Serlen, Director Press, Warner; Weinstein Brothers
. Mrs. Koffee Anan, spouse to United Nations Secretary General
. Abigail Disney, Producer, "Pray the Devil Back to Hell" (Liberia)
. Ambassador Khalizad, American Ambassador to the United Nations
. Ambassador Faisal al Istrabadi, Ambassador of Iraq to the United Nations
. Ambassador Tabeshian, Ambassador of Iran to the United Nations
and many others.

c.. Filmmaking for Young Peacemakers (2006-2007)
Students who take part in the International Cinema Festival are encouraged to apply to I.C.E'.s Young Filmmakers program, which is a two semester course co-taught by Dr. Roberta Seret and representatives from university film schools. Students learn about the mechanics of filmmaking while expanding their knowledge of the UN's organizational structure and mission. Their goal is to learn how to use filmmaking as a voice to better their community.

In September 2006, we began this after school program with 10 NYC inner-city 11th graders from 5 NYC public high schools. The 10 students came to the UN twice a week to learn about the UN by receiving free briefings from different UN agencies. They learned how to film from NYU Tisch interns on Saturdays and on Sundays they learned how to edit their film footage at the MNN studios. At the end of the year-after school program in May 2007, 3 of these students received a free summer internship program with the Tribeca Film Festival Arts Summer program; 3 students participated in a media training program with UNICEF; 3 students spent the summer as interns shooting in Europe and Cambodia; and one student filed for a copyright for her screen script. All 10 students have been recruited by NYU Tisch and Opportunity Program with scholarships.
d. Annual Student Film Festival (2007- present)
High school students participating in our program can submit their own photos and films to be screened at the U.N. or at the Simon Wiesenthal Center-Tolerance Center. We also host an Annual Student Essay Contest (2007- present)

e. Screenings of films in the high schools (2008-present)
Members of our org go into high schools with dvds of the films and participate in the post-screening Q and A discussions. We furnish pre and post information to the host teachers from various departments as English, Social Studies, Film, Media Studies, Humanities and English as a Second Language. We also invite these schools to participate in our "Global Classroom" at the United Nations for screenings, tours, briefings, discussion-visits to the Foreign Missions, Morgan Stanley, NY Stock Excgange, Simon Wiesenthal Tolerance Center, Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian, etc.

f. Global Economics Through Film (2009-10)
We designed and taught for CUNY's "College Now" program, a multi-disciplinary course, "Global Economics Through Film." We have also used the program in special education classes for students with low reading scores. They relate well to the screen and then we build on this process with supplements for reading, vocabulary and writing. Dr. Seret is also teaching this program to diplomats at the United Nations who are advanced ESL learners (2008-present).

g. International Film Festival in Cartagena, Colombia about Human Rights (2009)
During the week of August 24-29, 2009, Dr. Roberta Seret, on behalf of International Cinema Education, designed and hosted an International Film Festival in Cartagena, Colombia for the university students and public of Cartagena and Barranquilla about human rights. This program will serve as a model for similar film festivals to be presented at the Chickasaw Indian Nation Cultural Center in Oklahoma in 2012.

h. American Indians as an Indigenous Group (2010-present)
. We created and implemented a new program about the American Indian to our NY City public high school students. This includes screening of the film, "Pearl" from the Chickasaw Nation screened at the United Nations and high school classrooms; offered tours for students at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of the American Indian in NYC, and co-ordinated teaching programs with students from NYC with students from Oklahoma of the Chickasaw Nation.
. For the Cherokee Indian Nations, we hosted a 3-day Global Classroom" program for 20 Peer Leaders from Sequoya High School and Cherokee terrotiry in Oklahoma. Students participated in : U.N. briefings; U.N tour; U.N. Foreign Mission briefing; N.Y. Stock Exchange tour; Morgan Stanley Economic and Politics briefing; Interactive workshops at Simon Wiesenthal Tolerance Center about Human Rghts; and briefing and tour from the Smithsonian Institute's Museum of the American Indian.

i. Tolerance Center: Interactive workshops at Simon Wiesenthal Tolerance Center about Human Rghts


. ENDORSEMENT: (I will get this from Prof. John Broughton, Chairman of the Dept. of Media for Teachers College)

1. Vialogues
Columbia University's Teachers' College has a Think Tank of cutting edge pedagogy in Digital Format called "Vialogues." The site now includes a chapter from Dr. Seret's book, World Affairs in Foreign Films: Osama (Afghanistan)

2. Master Class: Beijing Bicycle (China):
Demonstration Class (held February 3, 2011)
Video of event:
" A demonstration class serves to model successful teaching and learning practices, in innovative and creative ways and, increasingly with the use of thought-provoking media. Enter Roberta Seret, Founder and President of International Cinema Education. Dr. Seret's organization offers a wide range of highly engaging, multidisciplinary programs, among them, Global Voices for Film, consisting of lectures and screenings of 10+ foreign films shown in partnership with local and regional high school classrooms; post Q & A discussions, with members of the United Nations and Morgan Stanley volunteers; a tour of the United Nations, with private briefings at Foreign Missions; and a workshop on human rights at the Tolerance Center.
On Thursday, February 3rd, Dr. Seret will lead a class at Teachers College for junior high school students, ages 12-14 years, from Patchoque, Long Island. The first half an hour will be shown of Beijing Bicycle, a film that questions China's transition into a Super Power, followed by a lesson plan, and Q&A. In this film, the director focuses on two seventeen-year-old boys and their relationship centered on a bicycle, the symbol of China. Both boys are of different social status; they yearn for acceptance within their group and are stubbornly determined to succeed - with surprising results. Viewers, especially young adults -- wherever they are- can relate to a stolen bike, and understand the importance of a bicycle for both pleasure and business.
Roberta Seret holds a doctorate in Comparative Literature and Master's in French from New York University and has taught literature and writing on the university level for many years. She directs an NGO under the aegis of the Department of Public Information at the United Nations. She is also Director of Professional English at the United Nations, where she teaches English language, literature and business. Roberta Seret has published:Welcome to New York, 5th ed. (1st ed. Harper & Row); Voyage into Creativity: The Modern Kunstlerroman (Peter Lang, 1992); "A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words," (Spring, 2004), United Nations Chronicle; "The United Nations as a Global Classroom," (Spring, 2006), United Nations Chronicle; and World Affairs through Foreign Films: Getting the Global Picture (McFarland, October 2011).This in-press book spans Asia, Africa, South America, Antarctica, Europe, and North America, with film synopses; historical background; pre-and post- screening questions; curriculum themes; suggested multidisciplinary activities; extra curricular activities; sidebars, public responses, and information on actors, directors, and awards; and bibliographies of further global study resources/films pertinent to each country covered.

4. Book Lecture at Teachers College on September 21, 2011:


As many of you know already, Roberta Seret is head of the International Cinema Education program at the U.N., and FERA has teamed up with her outfit to conduct joint projects. Most recently, under the leadership of FERA member Regina Casale, we brought a class of middle schoolers into TC to study the stand-out movie, Beijing Bicycle, as a way to help students make the link between fiction and non-fiction, between feature film and sociology/urban geography in the case of China.

Roberta has moved this kind of approach, and the pedagogical field behind such uses of film, forward a number of steps via her (very) recent book (above), which is now the major opus in this academic area of Education.

We are proud to have Roberta come to talk with us about the book, and to examine her approach to film in the classroom, focusing on the deceptively titled 2003 Afghani film about institutionalised sexism and sadism under the Taliban. This movie deals with the exclusion of women from public roles in terms of a story about a mother who is driven to disguise her 12 year-old daughter as a boy, in the interest of survival. For a fuller account of the film's content, see, and for an evaluative review, see

Hoping you'll join us for this unusual and exciting event in the Gottesman Library series, hosted by Jennifer Govan, with the collaboration of Arts & Humanities and Interdisciplinary Studies. Light refreshments will be served.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 16, 2003
Format: Paperback
Only two chapters of the book are very helpful. The sections on the neighborhoods provides a good overview but overall the book is outdated and not reliable as a resource.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Yasuko Kawamura on March 13, 2001
Format: Paperback
I have been in NYC for 1year.I am from Japan. This book covers all information that I need as a newcomer to NYC.I was especially interested in the subject"for foreign newcomer".It is about New York Culture,etiquette and how to get a job.Now I am sharing this book with all my friends who are in the same situation as being a foreigner in NYC. I believe that this book is the most practical guide book about the Big Apple.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Clifford Scott on July 29, 2002
Format: Paperback
I just moved to NYC from Utah, and needed one source of information from everything to finding a school for my 9 year old daughter to where the appropriate apartment for my family was. Welcome to New York was the only book I bought, and continue to use it on a regular basis as a source for all my New York needs.
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Format: Paperback
I received this book as a gift when I was trying to figure out how (in general) to move to NYC. Don't bother buying it: a lot of the information is dated (makes sense since things change quickly), and just about all of the advice the author gives, you'd be better off finding out from the internet, or seeking out some kind of community or friend who knows about the city. I think the "Not For Tourists" guidebook is better and more useful, and if you want just general info about the city, I think a traditional travel guidebook would be better.
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