Gizem Karagoz

Gizem Karagoz is a graduate student at Columbia University GSAPP pursuing a Masters of Architecture and Masters of Science in Urban Planning. Her research explores questions of informality, equity and resiliency in the built environment, with a focus on developing participatory design and planning strategies. Her previous research spans across scales, including a climate vulnerability analysis of New York City census tracts based on environmental and social risk factors, as well as, examining the links between labor, architecture and global networks with the Who Builds Your Architecture (WBYA?) coalition. She has also contributed to a UN-Habitat publication aimed to assist municipal governments with developing accessible, equitable and sustainable public space strategies. Prior to graduate school, Gizem worked with several New York based architecture practices including Bernard Tschumi Architects and GRO Architects. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture and Environmental Science from Barnard College, and currently serves as a Youth Representative for CSU.


Lea Felluss

Lea Felluss was born and raised in the Philippines, now a long time resident of New York City. The move sparked her passion for international development after witnessing firsthand the stark contrast between her home and adopted home countries. Prior to her current role, she was with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in various capacities focusing on mobilizing the private sector to engage in multiple intergovernmental processes including Rio+20, Financing for Development, Post-2015/Sustainable Development Goals - guided by the belief that business has a constructive role to play in society. In March 2016, Lea joined Philip Morris International to support the company’s business transformation efforts. She holds a Master of Arts degree in International Affairs from the New School’s GPIA program with a concentration in economic development.


James Bessoir

Born and raised in New York City, James Bessoir has cultivated a deep appreciation for architecture and urban design from an early age. Currently working as a Marketing Coordinator at CetraRuddy Architecture, James is passionate about design, art, technology, urbanism, and communication. As an architectural photographer, he strives to highlight detail and geometry while capturing the essences of well-designed spaces. Previously, he has interned with the New York City Council and at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC, and he holds a Bachelor of Arts in History and Government from Cornell University. At the CSU, he works with members of the board to produce and publish CSU NEWS.