Skip to content

President Bill Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, and student leaders to convene at Northeastern for Clinton Global Initiative University

President Bill Clinton speaks at CGI U
President Bill Clinton will be among the featured participants at the 10th annual Clinton Global Initiative University meeting, hosted by Northeastern. Photo: Adam Schultz / Clinton Global Initiative

Next week, Northeastern University will host the 10th annual Clinton Global Initiative University meeting, bringing together more than 1,000 students and experts from around the globe to discuss and develop effective solutions to pressing global challenges.

The three-day event will be held Oct. 13-15. The program features former U.S. President Bill Clinton and his daughter Chelsea Clinton, vice chair of the Clinton Foundation, as well as Northeastern President Joseph E. Aoun, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, and many other distinguished leaders, social entrepreneurs, activists, policymakers, and difference-makers.

Each student participating in CGI U has identified a pressing global challenge in one of five areas: education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, or public health. As part of the conference, students have collaborated to develop “commitments to action,” which are specific plans to address persistent global challenges. Since its first meeting, CGI U has brought together more than 8,700 students from more than 940 schools, 145 countries, and all 50 states.

Accreditation is now open for members of the media, who can apply via online registration.

Among the program highlights:

FRIDAY, OCT. 13

At the opening plenary, titled “What Unites Us: Building Community in a Divided World,” President Clinton will join activist musician and race relations expert Daryl Davis and Olympic medalist and entrepreneur Ibtihaj Muhammed to discuss how the next generation can take the lead in embracing the world’s growing interdependence.

Ticket information: The opening plenary, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Northeastern students, faculty, and staff can reserve tickets through the myNEU portal. General public tickets are available at mytickets.northeastern.edu.

CGI U and the Clinton Foundation’s Climate Initiative will also present a “codeathon” challenging student designers from across disciplines to develop a digital prototype that improves or facilitates energy efficiency in metropolitan areas and urban centers.

SATURDAY, OCT. 14

President Aoun—author of the new book Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial Intelligence—will participate in a session titled “Skills vs. Degrees.” The session will feature a discussion of the role of higher education in a time when the job market has become increasingly competitive and fluid, and in which artificial intelligence and advanced automation seems poised to upend traditional assumptions about employment.

Chelsea Clinton will moderate a panel titled “Making it: Designing a Sustainable Future.” The plenary session will address how innovations in social media, mobile technology, robotics, and artificial intelligence have fundamentally transformed our lives and the way we interact with each other.

Madeleine Albright and David Miliband, president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, will participate in a plenary session titled, “On the Move: Creating Opportunity for Migrants and Refugees.” The session will explore how commitment makers can equip refugees and migrants with access to capital and the necessary training to become successful entrepreneurs and innovators themselves, while convincing more people in host communities of the benefits of these measures.

Other sessions and events will focus on topics such as LGBTQ equality, the sharing economy’s sustainability, and how CGI U students are designing thoughtful and impactful projects as they set out to tackle some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

SUNDAY, OCT. 15

On the final day of the meeting, students will participate in the Annual CGI U Day of Action, in which President Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, Mayor Walsh, and President Aoun will lead CGI U students in giving back to the Boston community through a variety of service projects across the city’s neighborhoods.