You know we love highlighting inspiring alumni--and this time, we’re focusing specifically on Columbia women who are at the top of their game, the leaders of today and tomorrow. That’s why we’re excited to share “The Future Is…”, a podcast mini-series featuring interviews with alumnae who are the leaders of today and the creators of tomorrow.
We’ve curated a list of incredible women doing incredible things: you’ll hear from an award-winning filmmaker with two TED talks under her belt, from an artist-turned-climate “strategist”, and four voices of the future, the top women in engineering on campus.
This podcast mini-series is produced by Shanna Crumley, our digital initiatives intern and a second-year graduate student in international affairs at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs. Here are her thoughts on this mini-series:
"As a current graduate student at Columbia, I’m always keeping an eye out for great role models and stories that I can relate to as I start my career. As a woman, especially, I look for other women whose experiences can help me navigate the nuances of modern womanhood.
For this mini-series, I had the chance to look for women who are innovators, creating the future in a variety of fields like climate change, computer science and journalism. I found women doing cool things, and then I asked them about their work, their thoughts on their fields and what inspires them. And I promised one thing: I WILL NOT ask podcast guests what they’re wearing; I WILL ask about their ideas, opinions, jobs, plans and what makes them tick."
Stay tuned for the first episode next week on here on the blog, on Soundcloud or iTunes.
You may have noticed that we’ve been digging into our archives a lot. To be fair, there’s a lot of interesting stuff going on at Columbia and we want to revisit some talks that haven’t gotten a lot of attention lately. One of those talks was with Columbia physicist Brian Greene. In 2014 he sat down with the writer, and award-winning TV correspondent, Gideon Yago '00CC to talk about World Science U, Columbia's Science Initiative, and some of his out-of-this-world ideas.Read more
Odds are good that you’ve heard of Jack Dorsey. He’s the co-founder of Twitter and the co-founder of the mobile payment company, Square. In 2013, Dorsey gave a talk at Columbia and, at the time, it was the largest entrepreneurship event in Columbia history, attracting over 1,000 Columbia students, alumni, and friends. Since we’ve been digging into the archives lately, we thought we’d play you some highlights from that keynote address during which he talks about how he turned his obsession with urban maps, punk music, art, and coding into a micro blog that has changed the way we communicate.Read more
If you haven’t heard of the Columbia Center for Jazz Studies, that’s a shame, but we can’t be too disappointed in you. After all, the center is still relatively new. It was founded in 1999 and, since then, it has been integrated into the Core Curriculum at Columbia College. That means a lot of College students are getting exposed to music that isn’t exactly topping the charts nowadays.
But the Center for Jazz Studies takes a more broad view of the genre than one might initially think. Courses at the center look at jazz as it relates to technology, community, innovation, and even neurology. It’s that last approach that you’re going to hear about in this episode.Read more
We enjoyed talking to the Design Studio so much that we wanted to share more of the candid conversations we had about Design Thinking (and much more).
We wanted to get a better idea of who Adam and Alice are, not just as Design Studio representatives, but as design thinkers in general. What we got was a look into how they look at the world around them and what they see in the future of design thinking.
Spoiler alert: There's a blooper reel at the end!Read more
For this episode, we visited one of the forward-thinking initiatives taking place at Columbia. Tucked away on a side street near the Morningside campus, we found a place where thinkers, doers, and general challengers of the status quo come together to design a better future.
It's called the Columbia Entrepreneurship Design Studio and it's a project that developed through the Columbia Entrepreneurship program. The Studio brings innovators and entrepreneurs from across campus to pitch human-centered design ideas, identifying problems and dreaming up solutions for everything from micro-gardening to a dream team of surgeons in East Africa.Read more
Last week, we heard from Professor Robert Young, an eminent humanities scholar, who gave a lecture last year at the Columbia Global Center in Amman. Professor Young recounted the story of Walter Benjamin, a German Jew who fled Nazi Germany but was caught at the border of France and Spain, where he resorted suicide rather than be sent back.
During the lecture, Professor Young played a clip from Casablanca, drawing parallels between the Hollywood story and the truth behind it. We did not have room to include his analysis in last week's episode, so we created a bonus mini-episode just for it.Read more
We went into the vault for today’s episode, all the way back to a lecture that Professor Robert Young gave last year at the Columbia Global Center in Amman. We chose this particular lecture because Professor Young offers a historical perspective on an issue facing today’s society: migration.Read more
In sub-Saharan Africa, 650 million people lack access to electricity. In Sierra Leone in particular, only 5% of the population is on the grid. That means that six and a half million people can’t study, cook, eat or work after the sun goes down except by dim candlelight or expensive kerosene lamps. To charge their mobile phones, most Sierra Leoneans have to go to public charging kiosks.
Three Columbia alumni from the School of International and Public Affairs found a solar solution to this challenge. Their startup, Easy Solar, hopes to introduce solar-powered products into Sierra Leone households, replacing the kerosene lamps that have negative environmental and health impacts.Read more
We often like to talk about how our alumni reach grand heights in their successes and go far in their contributions to society. And not many have gone quite as far as Business School alum Timothy Kopra '13BUS. That is...as far as outer space.
Kopra is a NASA astronaut with not one but two space trips on his resume. He has lived on the International Space Station for a total of 244 days, completing three spacewalks and Instagramming with captions like #citiesfromspace and good night from @ISS. Once he got back to Earth, he visited Columbia to speak with students about engineering, teamwork, and what he looks for in an aspiring astronaut.Read more