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  • Writer's pictureAbigail Church

CHS Sophomore Attends Harvard IR Scholars Kennedy Initiative

March 9th-11th, Columbus High sophomore, Jacob Houston, had the opportunity to attend the Harvard IR Scholars Kennedy Initiative- exploring different perspectives of foreign policy and diplomacy.

The Harvard Undergraduate Foreign Policy Initiative is a non-profit student-led organization that allows Harvard undergraduates of all identities and perspectives to connect to the world of foreign policy decision-making.

The organization prepares future generations of leaders in foreign policy, diplomacy, and national security.

Houston was initially introduced to the program through a friend and applied for the experience of the program.

Last year, the program was virtual due to COVID; however, for 2022, it was an immersive experience for the students.

On the first day, the students attended an introduction ceremony and were introduced to the founder of Blackstone Private Equity Firm, Stephen Schwarzman.

On March 10th, the program allowed the students to tour the Harvard campus and welcomed former Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, to give a speech.

Later that day, everyone was sorted into groups to debate current issues, such as climate change, environmental effects of foreign policy, bioengineering, Ukraine, and the relationship between the US and China.

During the last day of the program, everyone gathered to listen to former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, explain global entrepreneurship more in-depth.

“My favorite part of the experience was conversing with like-minded people from many different countries around the world, whilst in the process of finding solutions to current world issues,” remarked Houston.


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