Podcast Episode 6: Creative Problem Solving and Resiliency

The Career Design Lab at Columbia’s School of Professional Studies recently launched a new podcast, “Rising to the Top: Lessons in Leadership.” The CDL team interviews senior industry leaders, including SPS alumni, who share the secrets of their success and reveal pivotal moments that impacted their career paths. Listen as they shed light on obstacles they overcame as well as wins they achieved.

In the sixth episode of Rising to the Top: Lessons in Leadership, we welcome Jarrett J. Krosoczka, the New York Times bestselling author/illustrator behind more than forty books for young readers. In an inspirational conversation, Jarrett talks about facing and overcoming adversity and drawing a clear path to success. You can also watch this live recording and see Jarrett illustrate in real-time below.

Be sure to subscribe to Rising to the Top: Lessons in Leadership podcast on Spotify, Apple, or Soundcloud — and listen in every Month. Some of the topics we’ve covered so far include:

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Jarrett J. Krosoczka, known since boyhood as “JJK,” is the New York Times bestselling author/illustrator behind more than forty books for young readers, including his wildly popular Lunch Lady graphic novels, select volumes of the Star Wars™️: Jedi Academy series, and Hey, Kiddo, which was a National Book Award Finalist. Krosoczka creates books with humor, heart, and deep respect for his young readers—qualities that have made his titles perennial favorites on the bookshelves of homes, libraries, and bookstores over the past twenty years.

In addition to his work in print, Krosoczka produced, directed, and performed in the full-cast audiobook adaptations of his graphic novels. The Hey, Kidoo audiobook garnered both Audie and Odyssey Awards for excellence in audiobook production. The Lunch Lady audiobook cast is led by Kate Flannery (The Office) and is rounded out by famed audiobook narrators and real kid actors! Krosoczka has been a guest on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross, has been profiled in The New York Times, was featured on Good Morning America, and has delivered three TED Talks, which have accrued millions of views online. Krosoczka has garnered millions of more views online via the tutorials he has produced for YouTube and TikTok. As well as working on his books’ film and television adaptions, Krosoczka has also written for The Snoopy Show (Apple TV+) and served as a consultant for Creative Galaxy (Prime Video), and appeared in live segments for the show.

Realizing that his books can inspire young readers beyond the page, Krosoczka founded School Lunch Hero Day, a national campaign celebrating school lunch staff. A consummate advocate for arts education, Krosoczka also established the Joseph and Shirley Krosoczka Memorial Youth Scholarships, which fund art classes for underprivileged children in his hometown of Worcester, Massachusetts.

Krosoczka lives in western Massachusetts with his spouse, their three children, pugs Ralph and Frank, and a French bulldog named Bella Carmella.