The OpEd Project’s Public Voices Fellowship program, begun less than a year ago, has already transformed hundreds of under-represented academics into visible, active, public thought leaders. Integral to the amazing success of this program are our illustrious PVF seminar leaders, working closely and tirelessly with PVF scholars to bring their much-needed ideas to the forefront of our public discourse.
Aside from being incredible teachers and cultivators of ideas, our PVF leaders are of course extraordinary thought leaders in their own right, each with her own unique and resounding public voice in both traditional and new media. This week is an exciting one for Fordham seminar leader Zeba Khan and Princeton seminar leader Michele Weldon, whose voices have been heard in major ways.
This past Friday, Zeba attended the White House Iftar (Ramadan dinner) to celebrate Muslim women who have made important contributions to American life. Zeba had a chance to speak with President Obama and share with him the work of the Op-Ed Project and in particular the success of our PVF programs! So yes, the President officially knows what our scholars are up to and says, “We need more [of it].”
This Wednesday, Michele got word that the Ted-Ed she wrote and narrated has been animated and will soon be up on the website. Ted-Ed, a viral online platform for educational material in the form of 3-5 minute animated lessons, is an exciting new forum for big ideas in the vibrant and constantly expanding TED community. Check out Michele’s TED-Ed on how to rise above the din as a journalist, coming out soon on the TED-Ed website.
Congratulations Zeba and Michele! You motivate and inspire the rest of us to put our voices out there!