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Isaiah - LIS - Curriculum Adviser

Isaiah Wellington-Lynn

Faculty

Isaiah is a designer who holds a BSc in Anthropology from UCL and was a visiting undergraduate to Harvard. He has further academic interests in computer science - and everything in between. Isaiah is passionate about positive mental health, inclusive design, social mobility, and education, and has worked with a range of organisations including Airbnb and J.P. Morgan.

I'm joining LIS because...

LIS inspires me for multiple reasons, but let's take two of them: LIS strives to take a holistic approach to assessing potential. The current system is not fair. It's our job as educators, academics, and leaders, to view students' success in the context of their story and to offer opportunities for them to express and articulate their potential. Secondly, it wasn't until I got to university and studied anthropology at both UCL and Harvard that I could truly appreciate the variety of ways I could show my grasp of a subject area. I am certain that LIS will take inspiration from these evaluation methods among many others to help our students hone practical, applicable and highly sought after skills as they make attempts to tackle some of the most difficult and nuanced problems our society has ever had to grapple with.

"How can we make LIS accessible to everyone, and a place where they feel they can belong and thrive?"

Top fields of disciplines

Anthropology

Sociology

Design thinking

Education

UX Design

Entrepreneurship

Social mobility

Isaiah is on a mission to become one of the most relatable storytellers of his generation, telling stories about people, products, and problem-solving in academically-grounded, inspiring, compelling, captivating, and empathetic ways. At LIS, he tells stories about how a critical, reflexive understanding of anthropology, product design and qualitative research methods allows us to better tackle real-world complex and complicated social problems such as inequality, unhappiness, unfairness, and sustainability. Through his PhD in Anthropology at the University of Oxford, he gains privileged insight into the nuanced ways people from various backgrounds navigate what it means to belong in different contexts. He is specifically interested in ideas of meritocracy, power, social mobility and belonging in academia, the corporate world and the social world. And, as an Anthropologist-In-Residence at TwentyFirstCentury Brand, Isaiah tells stories about how brands and products can facilitate a deeper connection between people. He specifically advises on how companies and foundations can be more mission-driven and purpose-led in how they serve their users and customers.

Isaiah holds a First Class BSC in Anthropology degree from UCL. During his studies, he spent a year as a Visiting Undergraduate at Harvard University where, in addition to Anthropology, he also took classes in Psychology, Computer Science, and Engineering Design. Isaiah had a scholarship for Harvard which unexpectedly fell through forcing him to crowdfund over £60K through his #StratfordToHarvard campaign. He then used the surplus funds raised to support disadvantaged students in his local community.
At UCL, Isaiah was a Student Advisor to the Institute of Global Prosperity Think Tank and worked closely with the anthropology department to show the value of Anthropology to students from under-represented backgrounds. He was also a Fellow at the London Zoo, co-managed and co-invested $10,000 in UCL entrepreneurs, and received the Lloyds Award for his volunteering efforts in supporting young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
At Harvard, Isaiah was a Fellow on the Politics of Race and Ethnicity program at the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics. He also founded a non-profit social impact venture, the Redefining Boundaries Fellowship, to reimagine what it means to belong in the technology industry and shine a light on the hidden black talent. He raised almost $20,000 from organisations including eBay, Airbnb, Facebook, and several tech investors.
Outside of academia, Isaiah has worked across a range of industries including finance, law, and technology. During the summer of 2020, he used digital ethnographic research and UX design principles to redesign the podcast listening experience on Spotify, for which he received the ‘Best UX Design’ award as part of his internship. He also partnered with the Archewell Foundation in 2021 for a project on compassion. He is currently curating a book launching in 2022 in partnership with The Hamilton Agency, TwentyFirstCenturyBrand and Little, Brown. The book aims to tell the stories of 21 British business leaders from underrepresented backgrounds.
Isaiah is also an active extra-curricular enthusiast: he swam for his London borough, captained his national-league basketball team for eight consecutive years, was called to represent the England basketball squad, and competed internationally and across the US. He also mentors several young people from resource-limited backgrounds with limitless potential. Baroness Valerie Amos and Colleen Amos OBE awarded Isaiah the ‘Inspirational Polymath’ 2021 award and Isaiah sits on the board of social mobility charity, Project Access and is an ‘Impact Champion’ at The Conduit Club. In his spare time, Isaiah has taken several adventurous trips abroad: hitchhiking around Kaui, Hawaii, surfing in the Dominican Republic, and fishing in Jamaica.

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