First Woman to be President at Columbia University

First Woman to be President at Columbia University

Isabella Flores-Pena

Nemat Shafik on Wednesday was announced president at Columbia University, an economist who had served as president of the London School of Economics since 2017. Shafik at 60 years old, will be the first woman ever to be president and lead an Ivy League institution. She will go in and replace current leader Lee Bollinger in July. 

Other Elite Schools in the nation are also putting women as their leaders such as Dartmouth, Harvard, and University of Pennsylvania.

The board of trustees all look at Nemat as a “perfect candidate” for this position. Calling her “brilliant and able global leader.”

Shafik’s family came from Egypt to the US in the 1960s when she was four years old. She attended school in Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina before earning her undergraduate degree in economics and politics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Later on she earned a master’s degree from LSE in economics and Ph.D in Economics from Oxford. 

With this position granted to her she will await Supreme Court decisions involving free speech on campus, race-conscious admissions, and the controversies over the high cost of education.