My name is Nina Naval (full name: Maria Ana Katrina Naval), I’m 18 years old, and I'm headed to New York in August. I have recently been granted admissions to—and am enrolling in—New York University for their prestigious Drama program. While it has been an absolute dream of mine to go, I am struggling to accumulate the amount of funds I need in order to ensure my placement in the program and get my student visa. New York University offers me the best chance at success, allowing upperclassmen to audition for various casting directors and agencies in order to ensure a smooth transition from a college student to a working actor, but it is notoriously expensive. For this reason, I am asking for your help.
New York University has given me a very generous 25% scholarship every year, but I find that I am still short on funds for this academic year. I plan to apply for a more robust financial aid package next semester, but I have to be able to pay for my first year. Next year, I aim to decrease this amount to a much smaller figure—if anything at all—but I must comply this year.
I have grown up surrounded by the arts and have fallen deeply in love with it. It has been something that I have always wanted to pursue even as a kid; however, it seems that despite the pride our country has for its extraordinarily talented citizens, it does nothing to foster the arts. There are scarcely any arts scholarships in comparison to STEM, arts programs in schools are often neglected and cause disdain for the arts instead of an appreciation for it. People hear about Lea Salonga, but nobody has the opportunity to pursue the arts as a valid career option as she did. Thus, I am asking you to help me change this.
I take theatre classes with the Tuloy foundation, a school for underprivileged and at risk kids in Muntinlupa, headed by Fr. Rocky Evangelista. They have an extraordinary performing arts program that allow them to take masterclasses with international casts (most recently, the cast of The Phantom of the Opera), and I’ve met these kids who want to pursue the arts as a career option but cannot because they don’t see it as a stable and sustainable career for the amount of risk that it takes in the beginning of it. When I told them abot my admissions to New York University and my planned enrolment, they often exclaimed, “You can do theatre as a job/major?!” I want to be an example and show them that the arts is something that they can pursue as a career and have success in it. I want to be able to come back during Christmas breaks (if I can) and teach them what I learned from one of the best performing arts university in the world.
ABOUT TISCH DRAMA & NYU:
New York University is now one of the largest private universities in the United States. Of the more than 3,000 colleges and universities in America, New York University is one of only 60 member institutions of the distinguished Association of American Universities. From a student body of 158 during NYU's very first semester, enrollment has grown to more than 50,000 students at three degree-granting campuses in New York City, Abu Dhabi, and Shanghai, and at study away sites in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North and South America. Today, students come from every state in the union and from 133 foreign countries.(Source: https://www.nyu.edu/about.html)
The acceptance rate for NYU before the Class of 2023 was 35%, however, this year, 84,481 people applied to NYU, which led to a drastic decrease in their acceptance rate. According to an article published by NYU, this year, the acceptance rate dropped down to 16%. (Source: https://www.nyu.edu/about/news-publications/news/2019/march/Class_of_2023_Admits.html) NYU is also ranked #43 in the world, according to QS World Ranking.
At Tisch Drama our interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to prepare you for a sustained career in the performing arts and related fields. You’ll benefit from a curriculum that has conservatory and academic components. Partnering with many of the country’s top professional theatre training institutions, our students enjoy conservatory training in acting, directing, musical performance, production, design or stage management. Your in-studio professional training is enriched by an expansive and innovative academic curriculum. That includes theatre studies and general education programs, as well as elective courses in the humanities and sciences. You’ll also get practical performance experience collaborating in a wide variety of productions and rehearsal projects led by world-famous theatre artists and faculty. (Source: https://tisch.nyu.edu/drama/about)
While the acceptance rate for Tisch Drama is not stated on any of NYU's websites, a forum on College Confidential used some information given to prospective students at the audition to deduce their acceptance rate: "If there are 300 slots, that is a 75% yield rate for enrollment. And if 2500 audition, and Mr. Bartow said they accept 15-17% overall to all studios, that 400 number of acceptances sounds in the ballpark to me."
Proof of acceptance: