Students Earn Grants for Social Enterprise Partners

by St. Andrew's Communications Staff
A micro-lease project in Tanzania and a solar electricity project in Haiti will each receive grant funding from St. Andrew’s Anne Wallace Fund for Service Learning after students pitched the projects on behalf of their partner entrepreneurs.
Four teams of juniors and seniors in St. Andrew’s International Development and Social Enterprise class made their pitches to a panel of experts in the field April 29. The presentations were the culmination of a year learning the macro and micro challenges facing those wishing to begin their own businesses in underfunded communities.

The micro-lease project was presented by senior Janine Junaideen and junior Hannah Twomey, and the solar electricity project was presented by seniors John Matal and Samantha Ojeme. Other projects pitched included a safe taxi service in Haiti (presented by senior Kaivan Brown) and a bakery in South Africa (presented by seniors Zara Blake and Michael Crawford).

Grants awarded by the Anne Wallace Fund for Service Learning average between $3,000 and $5,000. Panelists judging the projects included:

  • Kevin Abikoff P ‘23, P ‘27, P ‘29, Deputy Chair of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP
  • Nici Bush P’22, Vice President Workplace Transformation, Mars
  • Gretchen Hartley, Senior Director, Communications + Creative Services, Global Design Strategies, Marriott International
  • Steve Koltai, Research Affiliate of the MIT Center for International Studies
  • Andrea Vermehren, Lead Social Protection Specialist, The World Bank
The International Development and Social Enterprise class is taught by co-Director of Service Learning Chuck James, History teacher David Brandt, who explores the history of South Africa and Haiti, and English teacher Liz Kiingi, who focuses on the economic aspects of international development and social enterprise.

“I salute the extraordinary effort of Mr. James, as well as Mr. Brandt, and Ms. Kiingi, and the incredible teams of talented students whose creativity, intellect, and grit came shining through, even in these most difficult times, to develop strategies to positively impact the greater social good,” Abikoff said. “May their efforts continue for many years to come and their contributions multiply.”

Final contracts and conditions will be negotiated before the enterprises receive funding. To learn more about this class at St. Andrew’s, check out James’s article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. Click here to learn more about St. Andrew’s Episcopal School international partnerships.
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St. Andrew’s Episcopal School is a private, coeducational college preparatory day school for students in preschool (Age 2) through grade 12, located in Potomac, Maryland.