Students Pitch Projects to Social Enterprise Experts

Students in St. Andrew’s International Development and Social Enterprise class spend a year learning the macro and micro challenges facing those wishing to begin their own businesses in underfunded communities.
The culmination of this work is a pitch to a panel of social enterprise and international development experts in the hope of earning grant funding for their partner entrepreneurs in Haiti and South Africa.

Four teams of eleventh- and twelfth-grade students made their pitches on April 27 for why their project should receive funding from St. Andrew’s Anne Wallace Fund for Service Learning. Projects pitched included:

  • Improvements to a taxi transportation service in Haiti, presented by Tinoda Matsatsa ‘23, Elias Milam ‘24, and Xander Alarie ‘24 on behalf of Marie Nerlande
  • A convenience store expansion in Haiti, presented by Charlie Fisher ‘23 and Sam Ryan ‘23 on behalf of Gary Bathol
  • An expansion of a fish farm in Haiti, presented by Jake McClure ‘23 and Lorenzo Lloreda ‘23 on behalf of Olibry Bibine
  • Equipment for a bakery in South Africa, presented by Mason Jones ‘23 and Tony Chen ‘23 on behalf of Tonick Musomali.
Panelists judging the projects included Stephen Davenport P’25, Global Lead for Anticorruption, Openness, and Transparency at World Bank Group, and Patrizia Tumbarello P'22, '31, the Mission Chief for Haiti at the International Monetary Fund.

Tumbarello said the experience of listening to the presentations was very inspiring and noted the students' commitment to making a difference by empowering the local community members to succeed.

"The students were incredibly well prepared. They were not only knowledgeable about the technicality of their project, but they were also able to look at the big picture and the political economy context," Tumbarello said. "All projects had a vision, a strategy, a clear governance, an implementation plan and accountability anchored through a budget. They were very much able to think on their feet when challenged with all sorts of questions: risk of the implementation, expected life cycle of the project."

The International Development and Social Enterprise class is co-taught by co-Director of Service Learning Chuck James and history teacher David Brandt.

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 academics.
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.