We continue our series of associate spotlights with Sturdy Adams, a sophomore in Columbia College and an Associate Editor for JPS. Our Managing Editor, Aiden Slavin, sat down with Sturdy before spring break.
Aiden: So, Sturdy, thank you first of all for taking the time to meet with me. Do you think you could start off by telling us a little bit about your major? Why did you decide on your major?
Sturdy: Okay, I’m an economics major in the College. Econ has been an interest that developed over the past year or so, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to do coming into Columbia like most people, but I find it to be something incredibly practical and relevant in multiple parts of life.
Aiden: That’s cool, and as an underclassmen in the college, are there any classes you’d like to take in the future?
Sturdy: I’ve wanted to take a class taught by Brian Green ever since I saw his TED Talk on string theory. He’s one of the best professors [at Columbia]. I also have always wanted to take a class from Gulati. Also, I had this textbook when I was a freshman in high school by Alan Brinkley and I was pretty ecstatic when I saw he taught here. So I’ve always wanted take his class.
Aiden: That’s really interesting! To switch topics a bit – how did you find out about JPS? Why did you join it? What has been your experience and what have you gotten the most out of JPS?
Sturdy: I heard about JPS through a friend, actually. I’ve always been interested in writing and I guess it was the connection of political science and economics that I found interesting. Since I haven’t had that much exposure in an academic setting, it was pretty intriguing! Plus, it’s a pretty well known organization for what it does and I found the scope of what we do to be pretty impressive.
Aiden: Given that it’s your first semester in JPS, what do you like about your editing group and the work you all have been doing?
Sturdy: We are able to dig pretty deep in the article that we’re doing. Our article is about a Spanish memory law and we’re able to pack in some pretty detailed edits in a couple hours’ time. It’s a really productive and well-led group. Our senior editor [Jonah Belser] seems to have a really good conception of how to rigorously edit a paper.
Aiden: That’s great to hear, now here’s a pretty random question. Because I know you’re interested in music, if you could have dinner with any musician, alive or dead, who would it be?
Sturdy: This is like a college application question! I think it might have even been Columbia’s question. I had trouble with that one! I’m going to have to go with a jazz figure for this one. It would be Oscar Peterson.
Aiden: That’s cool, do you have any unusual talents you could tell us about?
Sturdy: I play jazz piano and I compose, although it’s been pretty crazy recently with economics. But I play with a jazz group on campus. We play some good stuff!
Aiden: Finally, answer at your own peril, who is your favorite member of the JPS board?
Sturdy: This is tricky, this is very tricky, kind of treacherous. It’s going to be a tie between Robert and Matthew. Because they interviewed me and seem like great JPS members!