Barnard is pleased to announce this year’s Global Symposium Student Fellows who will represent the College at the upcoming Eighth Annual Global Symposium, Women Changing Europe, in Paris, France, on March 18, 2016. Throughout the spring semester, these six students will develop leadership workshops for high school students in New York City and Paris.


Serra Akyuz is a junior in the Combined Plan majoring in urban studies and civil engineering. She is a member of Columbia Engineers Without Borders, Columbia Turkish Students Association, and participates in the Barnard Alumnae-to-Student Mentoring Program. Serra values the Global Symposium in that it provides student fellows with an opportunity to learn from women across the world and bring back their stories to the Barnard community. She is excited to explore gender issues on a microscale by listening to individual stories, and is eager to understand whether gender issues in France are a result of social constraints. Serra is also excited to go back to Paris and enjoy a chocolate-banana Nutella crepe while wandering through the Jardin du Luxembourg.


Melina Dunham is a sophomore who plans a political science major. She is an Athena Scholar, a Speaking Fellow in training, and a Peer-to-Peer tutor in French and Italian. As a Francophile and Francophone, Melina is eager to consider how the globalized conversation of women’s leadership plays out in the city of Paris. She is also excited to work with and to help empower young women through the Symposium's leadership workshops. 






Waverley Engelman is a junior from Western Massachusetts majoring in theatre. A set designer and stage manager, she is currently an assistant director for the Department of Theatre. She also worked for Barnard's Pre-College Program last summer and served as an administrative intern at Ripe Time, a Brooklyn-based feminist theatre company. As a French speaker and a proud Barnard student, Waverley is excited to apply all that she’s learned at Barnard to her role in this year’s Symposium. She is grateful for the opportunity to connect the Barnard community with concepts of women’s leadership in Paris and to empower high school girls both here and abroad. Waverley is especially looking forward to sampling (superior) French coffee, pastries, and cheeses, as well as exploring some of Paris’s incredible art museums.


Alycia Gideon is a senior with a double major in anthropology and Asian and Middle Eastern cultures, concentrating in South Asian studies. She is also enrolled in Columbia’s dual-degree program at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, working toward her M.A. in South Asian studies. She has served as a resident assistant for the past three years, first with the First-Year Focus team; and this year, with upperclassmen in Cathedral Gardens, and the Senior Experience team. Alycia is a fellow with the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, a program that seeks to increase diversity in academia. She attended the 2012 Symposium in Mumbai, where she spent her gap year. After benefiting from student fellows, she is excited to be able to take on this role herself, and to have the opportunity to learn more about women's leadership in France.  


Shelby Jennings is a senior majoring in mathemathics, with a minor in economics. On campus she is a resident assistant, serves as the Smart Women Lead president, and works in the economics department as a research assistant. She initially became interested in this year's Symposium after learning about the gender wage gap in France. Shelby looks forward to discussing women's leadership with high school students in both New York City and Paris and to hearing from the many inspirational women participating in the conference. She is also very excited to explore Paris.





Tina Shan is a sophomore who plans to major in comparative literature and art history with a concentration in visual arts. This past summer, she served as a residential intern for the Barnard Pre-College Program; currently a Writing Fellow at the Erica Mann Jong '63 Writing Center. Tina first experienced the impact of the Global Symposia as a high school senior at the 2014 Shanghai Symposium, where she was moved to tears by Professor Wu Qing's words. Thankful to be a member of a team of women who inspire and empower, she is also thrilled to spend her spring break in Paris—taking long walks down Parisian streets, meditating in Atelier Brancusi at the Pompidou, and tasting the famed Ispahan macaron from Pierre Hermé.