Happy November. I hope autumn in New York is treating you gently.

I have wanted a way to be in touch with all of you more regularly. From this point forward, I will send monthly newsletters to our MA program community to communicate key program information, share interesting articles, spotlight student and alumni accomplishments, and the like. Feel free to let me know if there is anything you want highlighted in upcoming newsletters.

For now, I wanted to share some advice I gave at our MA Program Orientation this past September (text below). My habit is that I tend to start out the academic year with a positive attitude and a list of things I will do "differently" (e.g. procrastinate less, be more patient, get more sleep, etc.) But, by this time of year I feel like I am hanging on by my fingernails to the bullet train that is our semester and just trying not to fall onto the tracks! So I am resending this advice to myself, as well as to you, in hopes it reminds all of us to cherish our community and to add to it as best we can. I will try to do the same. The terror attack in our beloved city last week only strengthens my gratitude for all of you and for our collective work.

Wishing you all a good month,

Sarah Brazaitis, PhD

Current Student Profile

Nirupama Narayanaswamy

Nirupama Narayanaswamy is a current student in the M.A. Program in Organizational Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. Driven by the urge to create transformational learning experiences, and to create a bigger impact at the leadership level, she found the M.A. Program to be the best fit for her. She has chosen to focus on Executive Coaching, in addition to her other areas of interest: Emotional Intelligence, Social Intelligence, Group Dynamics, Process Consultation, Change Management, and Cross-Cultural Management.


During her time in the program, she has completed an internship at Montefiore Health Systems as a Talent Management and OD Intern and is currently working as an Intern in the Professional Development and Leadership Team at the Columbia Engineering School. She also served as the Student Senator of the Department of Organization and Leadership, wherein her committee won the “Best Committee of the Year” Award, for introducing academic policy initiatives at the University Level.


Previously, she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering and Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management (HRM) & Marketing.  She has an overall work experience of 6 years in the Information Technology (IT), Education and Healthcare Industries. Before coming to TC, she worked as a Software Engineer in IT Multinational Companies such as Infosys and Robert Bosch, and worked as the Human Resource Management Trainee at Tata Consultancy Services, an IT Multinational Company. Realizing her inclination towards Learning & Development, she joined Trinity Skillworks, an Employability Skills Social-Entrepreneurship Venture, where she imparted Employability Skills Training for students in South India using experiential methodology. Her thirst for knowledge and self-introspection has also motivated her to undergo trainings on Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Associate Certified Coaching.


Backed by intent, powered by intellect, and driven by values, she looks forward to pursuing a career in the Leadership Development/Executive Coaching domain, to help people transcend barriers, and transform lives. Being a person of rich and varied interests, she enjoys pencil sketching, painting, singing Indian Classical and light music, reading fiction and self-development books, watching movies, exploring different places, and cuisines and interacting with people from different cultures.

Contact Niru with suggestions, questions, or just to say hello at nn2417@tc.columbia.edu.

Alumni Profile

Marissa Pipe

Marissa Pipe is a 2016 M.A. graduate who is currently working as a Senior Consultant in People Advisory Services at EY. Right now she is working with a large mining organization to review and assess their current Diversity and Inclusion strategy and to help the client increase the number of women in leadership positions within a traditionally male-dominated organization and industry. 

Marissa notes that her time at TC informs her work daily on a daily basis. She told us, "The fundamentals of organizational change and the Burke Litwin model, of course, are something that I refer to all the time. I also learned so much about group/team dynamics that I leverage very frequently - from an executive leadership client meeting to an internal team session, I am constantly noticing the way that people interact with one another, the authority they have, and using myself as an instrument." When she's not working, Marissa enjoys binge watching This Is Us on Netflix and is loving every mushy second of it.

If you'd like to connect with Marissa, feel free to do so via LinkedIn.

Recommended Reading


See link for a fascinating, albeit painful, account of one social psychology professor's story: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/18/magazine/when-the-revolution-came-for-amy-cuddy.html

(Article recommendation courtesy of Org Psych MA student, Elyce Cole).