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About the Columbia Political Union's Speaker Series Initiative

Perhaps the longest institutional tradition at CPU is our regular hosting speaking events featuring prominent political and cultural figures. Past speakers at CPU have included Al Gore, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, and many other politicians, as well as public intellectuals like Noam Chomsky, Cass Sunstein, and Lawrence Lessig, along with a diversity of academics, nonprofit executives, lawyers, activists, and policymakers who we believe contribute to our mission.

Coming off a mostly in-person year where we were able to invite speakers to speak on campus and organize in-person events, CPU hopes to further develop our reputation for consistently bringing high-value speakers to Columbia this coming year. High-profile speaking events are an important pillar of our organization, and have historically been our best-attended and most popular events. The best events bring hundreds of students and faculty together, spark fascinating conversations, and generate attention which allows CPU to increase our impact in other areas.

In order to build off our momentum of speaker events and programs from last year, contacting high-profile speakers and assembling panels will be an important part of CPU’s success in Fall 2022. We are seeking multiple Ambassadors for the Speaker Series committee, whose responsibilities will include researching potential speakers and finding their contact information, as well as securing funds for honoraria. This will involve contacting nonprofits which help student groups bring speakers to campus, writing grant applications, and writing a comprehensive proposal for our Speaker Series. Although CPU has already developed connections with a few potential donors, we are always seeking to expand our network and explore new funding opportunities.

 

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