Speakers & Events

The Young Initiative invites foreign policy experts and guest speakers to campus to engage in discussions on international relations and the global political economy with students and faculty.

Young speakers give students and faculty an opportunity to expand their understanding of global issues. The Young Initiative sponsors several speakers each academic year highlighting particular aspects of global affairs and the global political economy.  The Young Speakers program is devoted to highlighting the work and success of eminent international affairs experts and Oxy alumni in public service and academia.

Image for Globalization & Its Discontents: "Governing the Internet in a Global Age", Dr. Rinalia Abdul Rahim
January 31, 2017

Dr. Abdul Rahim is the founder of Compass Rose Sdn Bhd, which provides strategic advice and solutions towards enhancing performance, learning and impact. CR helps organizations, networks and communities find the key direction to success and value creation through knowledge, technology and innovation.

Image for Philipp Schonrock: Colombian SDGs Planning & Implementation
December 8, 2016

             This past week, Philip Schönrock Director of CEPEI (Centro de Pensamiento Estratégico Internacional) in Bogotá Colombia visited Occidental to speak for the SDG Speaker Series. His talk primarily focused on the role of governance in development and specifically the role Colombia played in creating and implementing the 2015 Sustainable Development Goals.

November 22, 2016

            John Marks, the founder and former president of Search for Common Ground, visited Oxy on November 21st and led a discussion titled "Can Sports Bring World Peace?" As a world renowned international conflict management programmer, Marks has aided US diplomatic missions in an effort to ease foreign tensions and reduce conflict risk.

November 14, 2016

        Brought here as part of  the "Can the United Nations Empower Social Change?" series; Mr. Altman’s talk primarily focused on the threat to life that queer bodies face globally, examining why sexuality and gender identity have become so politically contested. In his attempt to provide an explanation, he highlighted two paradoxes present in the international system.

November 7, 2016

 On Tuesday, Nov. 1, the Young Initiative welcomed co-founder of the Center for Open Data Partnership Laura Manley to campus. Manley’s presentation focused mainly on targeted group work, where students were asked to create teams to analyze some of the challenges facing the use of data to measure progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals. 

Image for Carmen Chu '00 Reflects on Her Journey to Public Service
October 26, 2016

Carmen Chu graduated from Occidental in 2000 and returned to campus Tuesday to share the story of her path to public service. She is the first speaker in a series hosted by the Young Initiative and Politics Department titled, Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series.

Image for Derek Chollet Discusses Obama's Foreign Policy Legacy
October 18, 2016

On October 14th, Derek Chollet came to Occidental College to discuss President Obama's foreign policy legacy. Derek Chollet is counselor and senior advisor for security and defense policy at The German Marshall Fund, was the U.S.

Image for Philip Thigo: Kenya's Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals
October 12, 2016

The recent speaker in the 2016 Sustainable Development Speaker Series, Philip Thigo, focused on the role of data in Kenya’s implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Thigo is a senior advisor for the Deputy President’s office in Kenya, as well as the founder of INFONET, and he approached the topic with a sense of optimism.

Image for Fmr. Prime Minister Lamothe Visits Oxy
October 4, 2016

The former Prime Minister of Haiti, Laurent Lamothe, visited Occidental to discuss new methods of economic development for the future of multilateral international relations. Mr. Lamothe shared his experiences using technology as a resource to help the country recover from the 2010 earthquake that produced a humanitarian crisis.