Past Events

Spring 2021

 Ulfar Erlingsson

IN FOCUS SPEAKER SERIES: A Life Making Your Software Secure and Your Data Private..or Trying To: In Conversation with with Apple's Ulfar Erlingsson '04
Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Ulfar Erlingsson, former Head of Security Research at Google Brain, is now a leading technologist in Silicon Valley and a member of the Advisory Council for the Milstein Program. Ulfar shared his story, "A Life Making Your Software Secure and Your Data Private... or Trying to" as part of the Milstein Program in Technology & Humanity’s spring 2021 “In Focus Speaker Series.", powered by Cornell.

Nonny de la Pena

IN FOCUS SPEAKER SERIES: Embodied Narratives: Engaging the Future of Immersive Content with Nonny de la Peña
Thursday, April 8, 2021

Nonny de la Peña is the founder of Emblematic Group, one of the world's producers of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality. Ms. de la Peña's work combines traditional reporting with emerging virtual reality technology where the result is an evocative experience that gives us news in a modern way.

This work also uses the power of embodiment to construct experiences that feel real. In this talk, Ms. De la Peña discussed how she wants to put the tools of immersive storytelling into everyone’s hands through REACH, a platform that empowers anyone to create AR/VR stories straight from a browser.

Robot hooked to wires

Policy, Politics, and Ethics of the Coming AI Revolution
Thursday, April 15, 2021

This interactive discussion, hosted by the Harold Tanner Dean of Arts & Sciences, as part of the Arts Unplugged series, Ray Jayawardhana, examined the roles of policy, politics, and ethics in shaping emerging technology and vice versa. 

The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) is characterized by the fusion of the digital, biological, and physical worlds. Artificial intelligence (AI) is central to this new era, and its influence on our lives is growing quickly and included leading experts contributing with regards to the enormous changes and considerations in how we can enact policy that supports democracy and an ethical society.

Ruha Benjamin

Fall 2020

 Behind the scenes of the 1000 cut journey

IN FOCUS SPEAKER SERIES: "1,000 Cut Journey" Using VR to Fight Racism with Dr. Courtney Cogburn
Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Dr. Courtney Cogburn, associate professor of social work at Columbia University, is the lead creator of 1,000 Cut Journey, an immersive virtual reality racism experience that was developed in collaboration with the Virtual Human Interaction Lab at Stanford University.

1,000 Cut Journey highlights the social realities of racism. During this virtual experience, viewers become Michael Sterling, a black man, encountering racism as a young child, adolescent, and young adult. 

ReLearm app logo

IN FOCUS SPEAKER SERIES: "The Journey Up: From English Major to Etsy" followed by "Pitchfest" moderated by Austin Bunn, Milstein Program Director
Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Chad Dickerson, former CEO of Etsy and a Cornell Tech fellow, shared his story in “The Journey Up: From English Major to Etsy,” on Oct. 28 as part of the Milstein Program in Technology & Humanity’s fall 2020 “In Focus Speaker Series.”

The talk was powered by eCornell and included a “speed pitch session” where five undergraduates pitched their business concepts to Dickerson for impromptu feedback. 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare Gamescom 2019 @dronepicr

FUTURE YOU SPEAKER SERIES: Director of Strategy & Business Intelligence, Activision Blizzard, Alex Marin Vidal '06
Wednesday, October 21 , 2020

Alex Marin Vidal '06 (BS, Film Studies) is the Director of Strategy and Business Intelligence at Activision Blizzard. 

As Director of Strategy & Business Intelligence for Activision Publishing (AP), Alex and his team partner with our senior leadership and studios to inform product and business strategy. The team leverages deep industry knowledge and market/competitor trends and analytics to help inform product development, long range planning, pipeline strategy, and various ad-hoc business needs as they emerge. He is also the founder and co-chair of the Latinx @ Activision diversity network.

State of the Pod, Rise of the Juul episode artwork

FUTURE YOU SPEAKER SERIES: Podcaster & Newman Civic-Fellow Yunyun Wang '21
Wednesday, September 23, 2020

In 2018, Yunyun Wang (B.A. Government & B.S. Info Sci, Systems and Technology) created “State of the Pod,” a student-driven podcast that explores emerging topics in science and technology and their underlying ethical and social implications to encourage greater public engagement and scientific literacy.

Wang has worked at a digital rights think tank, a smart city incubator, and most recently at a biomotion analytics start-up to better understand the future of tech policy. In the spring of 2020, she was  named a Newman Civic Fellow, which honors students who engage with others to create long-term social change, take action to address issues of inequality and demonstrate a potential for civic engagement.


 Milstein Students Practice Public Speaking Skills

SPEAK AND BE HEARD: Communication Tools for Career Success with Eliza VanCort
Monday, March 2, 2020
Tuesday, March 3, 2020
Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Eliza VanCort, a motivational speaker who specializes in workplace communication, facilitated a series of public speaking workshops for Milstein Program students in March 2020. In the workshops, VanCort gave the students tips for effective public speaking. 

Milstein student build their paper sound designs

Workshop with Tapan Parikh and Cornell Tech Faculty Team
Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Tapan Parikh, associate professor in the department of Information Science and faculty director of the Milstein Program at Cornell Tech, visited campus with other Cornell Tech educators in February to talk with Milstein students about what to expect during their first six-week summer session at Cornell Tech. Watch the video!

The 2017 Intergroup Dialogue Project (IDP) Conference.

Intergroup Dialogue Process: Creating Community/Working Across Differences - "Connection Across Cohorts/Mentoring"
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Milstein students spent two weeks in February participating in critical reflection and Intergroup Dialogue Project workshops as part of their Collab Course. In these workshops, students reflect on their ongoing work with community partners and learn about mentorship opportunities within the program and on campus.

Richard Kiely

Developing a Disposition of Critically Reflective Practice: Key Concepts and Good Practices with Dr. Richard Kiely
Wednesday, February 5, 2020

To paraphrase educational philosopher, John Dewey, “we don’t learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on experience.” The workshop will focus on key concepts in critical reflection and offer a number of tools to cultivate participants’ skills to engage in high quality critical reflection before, during and after the service-learning experience. Through small group work and interactive exercises, we will engage with a variety of critically reflective methods aimed at distilling learning outcomes that result from service-learning experiences, as well as developing a lifelong disposition of reflective practice.

Participants create materials for design thinking workshop

Milstein Program Special Event: Innovation by Design with Dr. Virginia Rath
Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Dr. Virginia Rath, a scientist, design research consultant and serial entrepreneur, led Cornell students in a workshop on Jan. 29, encouraging attendants to employ design thinking skills to innovate solutions. 

During the workshop, students practiced qualitative approaches to design thinking such as user observations and ethnographic interviews to help them understand stakeholders. 

Cornell Tech faculty team tell Milstein students about the summer program

Trip to Cornell Tech for summer updates, alumni visits
Saturday. November 22, 2019

Students in the Milstein Program in Technology and Humanity visited Cornell Tech Nov. 22 to meet with the Milstein Program Advisory Council and learn more about their summer curriculum.

The day began with a lunch and a panel featuring Cornell faculty and staff, as well as advisory council members, including chair Michael Milstein. Greg Morrisett, the new dean and vice provost of Cornell Tech, led the panel, where each member talked about their background, their vision for the program and answered student questions on a variety of topics.

Students attend Data Visualization workshops

Milstein Program Special Event "Data Visualization Workshops" with Dr. Anna Feigenbaum
Monday, November 18 & Wednesday, November 20, 2019

By graphically representing data, information becomes more accessible to different audiences. Anna Feigenbaum, a writer, researcher and educator who focuses on creating social change through technology and communication, visited campus Nov. 18-20 for two workshops on data storytelling, sponsored by the Milstein Program in Technology and Humanity and open to all students.

Student walk around campus with microphones

Milstein Students Attend "Sound Master Classes" with The World According to Sound Podcasters, Chris Hoff and Sam Hartnett
Wednesday, October 23 & November 6, 2019

Through the use of technology, sound can be recorded to tell powerful narratives, as well as communicate important information. Producers Chris Hoff ‘02 and Sam Harnett have made a career out of recording and digitally editing naturally occurring sounds which evoke human emotions and transport listeners. Both are artists-in-residence this semester as a part of Cornell’s Media Studies Initiative. As part of their work on campus, Hoff and Harnett led a two-part “Sound Editing Masterclass” for Milstein students, to introduce them to sound technology and podcast recording techniques. These skills will be useful during the summers on the Cornell Tech campus when Milstein Program students may work on an aural history project. 

Howard Rodman

Milstein Program Special Event "A Reading by Howard Rodman" screenwriter, educator and author. His most recent book, The Great Eastern, soon to be adapted to film
Thursday, October 17, 2019

On Oct. 17, the Milstein Program in Technology and Humanity welcomed screenwriter and novelist Howard Rodman ‘71 to Ithaca for a reading of his new book, “The Great Eastern.”

After graduating from Cornell, where he was editor-in-chief of the Cornell Daily Sun, Rodman held various jobs, including as a guitarist in several Manhattan bands. He eventually found success in screenwriting, working among stars like David Bowie and Julianne Moore and his screenplay for “Savage Grace” was nominated for a Spirit Award in 2008 after it debuted at the Sundance Film Festival.

Scene from "The Wolves" play

Milstein Program Students attend Performance: “The Wolves”
Friday, September 27, 2019

"The Wolves" is a high-energy, high-impact play about coming of age in contemporary American society. Featuring the members of a girls’ high-school soccer team, the play examines in depth issues of inclusion and exclusion, teamwork, acceptance, and selectivity.

Focused also on the toughness of its characters, the play engages and upends our preconceived notions about girlhood and femininity.

Hoffman Ropes Course

Hoffman Ropes and Team Building Course for Milstein Program Students
Sunday, September 1, 2019

Milstein Program students visit the Hoffman Challenge Course on Cornell campus to do team building program and low-ropes course. Students learn team communication, leading/following, thinking outside the box and iterative problem solving all in the form of an experiential, fun day outside.

Students enjoy Milstein BBQ

Welcome BBQ Dinner for Milstein Program students  
Wednesday, August 28, 2019

The Milstein Program in Technology & Humanity is hosting a dinner to welcome the 2022 and 2023 classes of Milstein Program. The group will enjoy a a visti to the beautiful Cornell Botanic Gardens and dinner provided by Dinosaur BBQ. 


 Mitchell Baker

A conversation with Mitchell Baker, Chairwoman of Mozilla and co-founded of the Mozilla Project
May 1, 2019
Gates Hall

Mitchell Baker co-founded the Mozilla Project to support the open, innovative web and ensure it continues offering opportunities for everyone. , Mitchell Baker is responsible for organizing and motivating a massive, worldwide, collective of employees and volunteers who are building the internet as a global public resource, open and accessible to all. Mitchell is deeply engaged in developing product offerings that promote the mission of empowering individuals. She also guides the overall scope and direction of Mozilla’s mission. Mitchell has written the key documents that set out Mozilla's enduring mission and commitments – the Mozilla Public License in 1998, the Mozilla Manifesto in 2007 and the Mozilla Manifesto Addendum – also known as the Pledge for a Healthy Internet – in 2018. Watch the Video!

Oskar Eustis

A conversation with Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director of The Public Theater
April 24, 2019
Schwartz Center, Kiplinger Theater

Oskar Eustis has served as the Artistic Director of The Public Theater since 2005. In the last three years, he has produced two Tony Award-winning Best Musicals (Fun Home and Hamilton), and back-to-back winners of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Hamilton and Sweat. He came to The Public from Trinity Repertory Company in Providence, RI where he served as Artistic Director from 1994 to 2005. Eustis served as Associate Artistic Director at Los Angeles’ Mark Taper Forum from 1989 to 1994, and prior to that he was with the Eureka Theatre Company in San Francisco, serving as Resident Director and Dramaturg from 1981 to 1986 and Artistic Director from 1986 to1989. Eustis is currently a Professor of Dramatic Writing and Arts and Public Policy at New York University, and has held professorships at UCLA, Middlebury College, and Brown University, where he founded and chaired the Trinity Rep/Brown University Consortium for professional theater training. Watch the Video!


A conversation with Todd McGrain, artist and creative director for The Lost Bird Project and Smartfin
April 16, 2019
Tatkon Center

McGrain is an artist and creative director for The Lost Bird Project, which raises awareness of environmental and social concerns through art. The Smartfin project attaches data-gathering fins to surfboards to monitor water characteristics—including salinity, pH and temperature­­— and gain insight into ocean ecosystems. Watch the Video!

Rick Johnson

"Studying Vermeer's Canvases and Rembrandt's Papers: Two Examples of Computational Art History" with Rick Johnson
November 9, 2018
A. D. White House

Rick Johnson, will talk about the emerging field of computational art history, a branch of digital art history, which is at the intersection of art and science. Johnson applies image processing techniques to help automate the gathering of forensic information useful in art history research.  He uses digitized radiographic images and algorithms to find and match manufactured patterns in canvases and papers to date and authenticate historic works of art.  Watch the Video!

Natasha Singer

“Digital Innovations and Design Thinking” Talk with Natasha Singer
October 29, 2018
Tatkon Center

"Creepy or Not? Holding Big Tech Accountable Through Journalism". Milstein Program students will have the opportunity to meet with Natasha Singer, a New York Times journalist covering the intersection of technology, business, policy and society for a talk about digital innovations and design thinking.

Moira Weigel

"How Not to Be Evil” Talk with Moira Weigel
October 24, 2018
Tatkon Center

Moira Weigel is a writer, scholar, and founding editor at Logic magazine, currently at the Harvard Society of Fellows. She received her PhD in Comparative Literature and Film and Media from Yale University in 2017. Before Yale, she earned a BA (summa cum laude) from Harvard University, and an M. Phil from the University of Cambridge, where she was the Harvard Scholar in residence at Emmanuel College.

Xu Bing

"Talk Back" with Xu Bing about The Character of Characters
September 19, 2018
Tatkon Center

XU BING (2015-2021)—is a Chinese-born artist whose artistic and cultural interventions touch on the fields of public and ecological art, printmaking, new media installations, drawing and sculpture.  Professor Xu Bing resides both in the US (since 1990) and Beijing, where he served as Vice President of China’s Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA), Beijing, China, and recently begun a new chapter at CAFA as Professor with responsibility for graduate students. His biography charts the path of international influence of Chinese contemporary art and its complex place in Chinese politics over the last forty years. Watch the Video!

A Meditation on Tongues

A Meditation on Tongues by Ni'Ja Whitson
September 14, 2018
Schwartz Center for Performing Arts

Milstein Program students will have the opportunity to attend a performance or A Meditation on Tongues by Ni’Ja Whitson and chat with the artist after the performance. A Meditation on Tongues by Ni’Ja Whitson is  part of the 2018 Cornell Council for the Arts Biennial, Duration: Passage, Persistence, Survival. For more information about the performance visit the artlists website.