Columbia Business School’s Student-Run Conferences

Columbia Business School (CBS) offers a series of student-run conferences throughout the year that give both first- and second-year students the opportunity to expand their knowledge across a variety of disciplines via panels and keynote speaker addresses, and to network with like-minded students, conference sponsors (who are often also big CBS recruiters), and even industry professionals.

During the popular Social Enterprise Conference, which typically takes place in the fall, speakers discuss the ways leaders and managers can use strategy as a tool to maximize social change and how organizations can incorporate a broader spectrum of social gains into their organizational strategies, among other issues. The 2023 Social Enterprise Conference was hosted on campus in October with the theme “Capital for Good” and the chief climate officer of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection serving as the keynote speaker.

Like the Social Enterprise Conference, the Marketing Association of Columbia (MAC) Conference usually enjoys a packed house in the fall. The MAC Conference has focused on such topics as the elevation, enhancement, and personalization of the brand experience for today’s mindful consumer. The 2023 event was hosted in November with the theme “Marketing in the Next Generation” and such keynote speakers as the founder of MaryamB and the founder and CEO of Kadima Careers.

The annual CBS Healthcare Conference, which is held in February, has featured such panel discussions as “The Business of Cancer: Innovations, Trends and Challenges in Delivering Cures” and “Healthcare M&A: Is Bigger Always Better?” The 2023 conference took place on campus throughout two days and had the theme “The New Patient Journey: Advancing Holistic and Personalized Care.” Keynote speakers included the head of the healthcare group and general partner at Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, while panel discussion topics included “Holistic Care Models: From Acute to Preventative Medicine.”

The year-round conference season at CBS also includes the India Business Conference and the Columbia Women in Business Conference. CBS often touts its New York advantage—students have the business world right outside the school’s door, ripe for exploration. As you can see, however, this advantage does not mean that CBS neglects to bring the business world to its students.

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