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Spring 2021 Advisory

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Connecting People, Ideas, and Expertise: Dan Jaworsky on the IKNS Program

Dan Jaworsky, an alum of Columbia’s Information and Knowledge Strategy (IKNS) program, has started a new role as Director at the Committee for Economic Development. We sat down with Dan to ask him about his time in the program, and how he brings what he learned there into practice in his career.

What drew you to studying IKNS?

My passion is around connecting people, ideas, and expertise to solve strategic problems and overcome obstacles. I believe that we come up with superior solutions when we expose ourselves to new perspectives and incorporate diverse experiences and opinions into our work. The IKNS program was a natural fit.

Looking back on your experience in the program, what are some of the highlights of your time there?

I would highlight the strategic knowledge I gained, which has led to a broader strategic view of the objectives, obstacles, and stakeholders involved in my work. There were some “character-building moments” in stretching abilities that one might not have thought were possible that gave me a better understanding of our capabilities as individuals. And maybe most importantly, my cohort was a true highlight of the program. We went through ups and downs together, and I could not have learned as much as I did without the bright set of individuals that were in the program with me.

What have you found useful from the program in your new role as Director at the Committee for Economic Development?

Since graduation, I have been leveraging much of what I learned during the program in my approach as a leader. In my new role, I’m responsible for operations and outreach. As I close out my first few months at the Committee for Economic Development, I often find myself looking back on much of what I learned to drive collaboration, transparency, and overall success.

What was your experience completing the degree as a working professional? Did you find the program flexible?

The IKNS program was perfect for someone like me (working full-time with a very demanding, client-facing role). The academic director, faculty, and my classmates were all very understanding and stayed flexible in finding ways to work through the deliverables without causing undue burden on my professional and personal life.

Learn more about the M.S. in Information and Knowledge Strategy program.