Meet Adam Stickney from the Climate and Society Class of 2023

Meet Adam Stickney from the Climate and Society Class of 2023

Adam Stickney is joining the Masters in Climate and Society program this fall. He is eager to learn how to turn thought into climate action.

This fall, Columbia Climate School welcomes a new class of students to the Master’s Program in Climate and Society. The 12-month interdisciplinary program trains students to understand and manage the impacts of climate change and climate variability on society and the environment.

The incoming Class of 2023 includes 80 students with diverse backgrounds and career paths, impressive skills, and big plans to help protect people and the environment.

State of the Planet will feature interviews with several of these extraordinary students over the coming weeks. In the Q&A below, you can meet Adam Stickney, who is eager to learn how to turn thought into climate action.

Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you became interested in studying the climate?

I grew up in England and spent a lot of my time around nature. My youth is full of memories of time spent in the woods of southern England. It wasn’t until I took classes at university that I really began to understand the scale of the climate crisis. It was my community college professor who inspired me to pursue my studies in the environmental field, and now that I’ve graduated from UC Berkeley, I feel ready to focus my studies specifically on climate at Columbia.

With each new IPCC report released, it becomes increasingly clear to me that the climate crisis is the greatest challenge facing humanity, and our response will determine the fate of our planet and all species on it. live. My interest in the study of the climate goes beyond my love for nature. Ultimately, it is a response to the devastation that will result from climate change and the unequal impacts it will have globally.

What specifically attracted you to the Climate and Society program?

The Climate and Society program is unique in that it has an interdisciplinary approach to the study of climate, which is exactly what I was looking for. I was thrilled to see a leading university open a school solely focused on climate – the Columbia Climate School. It’s clear to me that Columbia is taking this crisis seriously and is ahead of the game here. It’s exactly where I want to be; this is where innovation happens. The class cohort comes from a range of diverse backgrounds, which is critical to achieving a holistic and effective climate response and understanding.

What are you most looking forward to learning while you’re here?

Beyond the basic science needed to fully understand the complexities of climate, I’m especially excited to learn more about the processes needed to turn thought into action. By this I mean how can we turn our research into substantive policy. American politics has become restless and increasingly convoluted, and learning to navigate this terrain is essential to implementing positive change.

How does the program align with your career goals?

I aspire to work in the field of climate policy, either as a policy analyst for the government or in an NGO think tank to carry out research and advocacy. This program couldn’t have prepared me better for that. I will acquire a dynamic scientific and mathematical training in climate, and the skills to transmit it in a pragmatic way to decision-makers. We will conduct research and collaborate with other students, faculty, and organizations. This is exactly why I wanted to be part of an interdisciplinary climate program.

Do you have anything else to add?

How surreal it is to have this amazing opportunity to pursue my passions and have the chance to be part of the solution. My acceptance into Columbia Climate School has been ineffable and I can’t wait to begin this new chapter of my life in New York.


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