CUNY Lecture Series

Who’s Listening to Parents?

October 1, 2015 | CUNY Lecture Series, CUNY School of Law

Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg put himself in charge of NYC public schools, and Bill de Blasio has continued mayoral control, but is that the best thing for students? Public Advocate Letitia James co-hosted a group of experts at CUNY School of Law to discuss it. She said parents citywide feel the school system doesn’t hear their concerns, and the group discussed how to improve the system.

Jail Breaks

August 19, 2015 | CUNY Lecture Series, John Jay College of Criminal Justice

The longtime New York State Senate and Assembly leaders are indicted on corruption charges, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo names the attorney general a special prosecutor to look into civilian deaths caused by police. With these upheavals in the state legal universe, is this the year lawmakers finally grapple with sentencing reform and other changes to the criminal justice system? At John Jay College, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and other experts discuss the reform proposals.

Waiting for Equality

August 18, 2015 | CUNY Lecture Series, Graduate Center

If marriage equality can become politically acceptable in the United States, so can the concept of the government promoting income equality, Paul Krugman says — but he thinks it will take a cycle of three presidential elections — “the administration of Chelsea Clinton,” he jokes. To spread the wealth around, the feds can improve the climate for labor unions and set a living wage as the minimum wage, Krugman tells Graduate Center professor Janet Gornick, in a discussion of the book “Inequality: What Can Be Done?” by Anthony B. Atkinson.

Talking Frankly

August 11, 2015 | CUNY Lecture Series

Barney Frank tells how reducing drug prosecutions —- which he says are largely racist —- and military interventions would free up money for more government-subsidized health care, education and other social programs. The former Massachusetts congressman also tells the Roosevelt House audience also says the fight for gay equality will be aided by the profit motive of corporations that want to sell to the gay community.

Master Disaster

August 6, 2015 | Baruch College, CUNY Lecture Series

In the Coast Guard, Richard Larrabee oversaw the cleanup of the Exxon Valdez oil spill and the search for JFK Jr. after the Kennedy prince crashed his plane. He joined the Port Authority and was in 1 WTC on 9/11 and was port commerce director when Hurricane Sandy hit. “Always take advantage of a good crisis” to effect change, he tells a Baruch College audience.

O’Keefe’s Origins

July 23, 2015 | City College, CUNY Lecture Series

In his 2015 commencement address to City College grads, Nobel Laureate Dr. John O’Keefe fondly recalled his college years when he first began exploring connections between philosophy and neuroscience. “I don’t think my story is unique. I’m just a good example of City College’s gift to youth and to the nation,” O’Keefe said.

Knock on Wood

June 24, 2015 | Baruch College, CUNY Lecture Series

Hedge fund manager and activist investor Whitney Tilson thought Lumber Liquidators’ profit margins were was too high. Tilson tells an audience at Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business how his suspicions led him to accuse the company of using cheap Chinese lumber containing potentially unsafe levels of formaldehyde.

John O’Keefe on Inner Workings of the Brain

June 12, 2015 | City College, CUNY Lecture Series

Nobel Laureate and City College alum John O’Keefe traces historic findings on the hippocampus and human memory to his recent research on the brain’s cognitive map. O’Keefe, along with two other scientists, won the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for discovering an inner GPS in the brain that helps navigate surroundings. His engaging, and often humorous, discussion marked the inaugural Professor Sharon Cosloy-Edward Blank Family Distinguished Scientist Lecture at City College.

Blood for Blood

June 12, 2015 | CUNY Lecture Series, Graduate Center

A few years after the Armenian genocide of 1915-16, several ex-leaders of the former Ottoman Empire met sudden violent deaths at the hands of assassins. Armenian-American actor Eric Bogosian tells the real-life cloak-and-dagger story behind these little-known historical events.

Bash Back

June 10, 2015 | CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, CUNY Lecture Series

The LGBT movement has won some battles, but “victory blindness” threatens these gains, Michelangelo Signorile argues in “It’s Not Over: Getting Beyond Tolerance, Defeating Homophobia and Winning True Equality.” Signorile talks about his ideas for the movement to stay on the offensive —- including bashing gay bashers — with journalist Dan Savage.