In business environments today, vast amounts of data determine how companies operate and invest in resources. Successful firms base hiring on talent with a deep understanding of data analytics and knowledge of the newest technologies. “All of our students need to be not just literate, but I would say, data fluent,” says Jonah Rockoff, senior vice dean for curriculum and programs at CBS.
The School offers courses that help students not only achieve that fluency, but also gain understanding of the fundamental tools businesses use today, and exposure to the cutting-edge breakthroughs that will change business in the future.
Courses prepare students to successfully lead engineers and data experts in creating new products, moving into emerging markets, and improving business functionality. “You can’t lead tech experts if you don’t understand the essentials of how technology works,” says Rockoff, who also is the Paul Garrett Professor of Public Policy and Business Responsibility.
Rockoff and other curriculum developers, including faculty, determine which courses fulfill the school’s curricular priorities. They watch the business landscape, monitor emerging tech, and address any gaps with opportunities for both traditional and experiential learning. Students have embraced these opportunities, flocking to courses such as Technology Breakthroughs, taught by CBS Dean Costis Maglaras and Columbia Engineering Dean Shih-Fu Chang. In it, guest lecturers discuss current trends in digital tech, including AI, robotics, photonics, deep learning and neural networks, blockchain, and digital cities.
Technical in a different sense, CBS Professor Chris LaSala’s hands-on learning opportunity in digital product management requires students to work with companies to apply the best practices and frameworks they’ve learned in the classroom to various real-world issues related to new digital products.
At this point, CBS supports a full digital curriculum, with new courses and opportunities added in response to the business landscape and the CBS community. Highlights of this year’s program include courses in Crypto, Python, and Real Estate.