2012 Summer Fellows
Elizabeth Adams ’12 worked with the Peaks Foundation, a nonprofit that organizes inspirational trekking and climbing expeditions for women to raises funds to support grassroots nonprofit organizations, that focus on empowering women, in the communities they are traversing. Elizabeth worked with the executive director to develop a business plan to determine future funding goals and develop a sustainable cost basis as the Peaks Foundation emerges from its start up phase.
Amy Anenberg ’13 worked at Robin Hood Foundation, a nonprofit that fights poverty in New York City by identifying, funding and partnering with over 240 of the most effective schools and programs in the city's poorest neighborhoods. Robin Hood applies investment principles to philanthropy and philanthropic ideas to inventment practices, attacking poverty at its root causes and rigorously evaluating programs to measure results. Amy interned with the Management Assistance team, where she analyzed Robin Hood's investments in the development offices of its grantees to determine whether Robin Hood assistance had an impact on their efficacy, overall budget size and mix of revenues.
Courtney Catallo ’13 worked with Technical Development Corporation (TDC), a nonprofit management consulting and research group dedicated to providing the nonprofit sector with the business and management skills they need to carry out their missions effectively. Courtney worked on a variety of projects throughout the summer, including a strategic growth planning and competitive environment analysis project with an arts funder in Pittsburgh, as well as a financial analysis project with a park conservancy group in Boston. Project work included project management, financial analysis, conducting research, and writing and editing client deliverables.
Dana Edelstein ’13 interned at the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) within the Strategy and Ventures team on two projects. She worked to analyze the economic viability of new, multiplatform distribution channels by conducting competitive analysis, evaluating user behavior, and creating financial models. She also worked to design a metrics dashboard that will enable PBS and its stakeholders to effectively assess performance across departments.
Elizabeth Farjardo Butler ’12 worked with the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United (ROC- U). ROC-U is a national restaurant workers' organization that seeks improved wages and working conditions for the nation's low-wage restaurant workforce. ROC engages in three areas of work: waging campaigns for justice against 'low-road' employers, promoting responsible employers taking the 'high road' to profitability, and conducting research and policy work to lift conditions industry- wide. Elizabeth's work focused on the research and policy aspect of the organization. She conducted industry wide market and competitive research and contributed to workplace improvement strategies.
Rocio Garcia Ruiz ’12 worked at the NYC Department of Education with both the Strategic Incentives and Recruitment Programs teams. She performed an evaluation of the teacher movement in the system over the past thress years and ans assessment of academic outcomes for Teaching Fellows who have participated in the Science and Math Immerwsion programs.
Rajib Guha ’13 and Beth Mitchell ’13 interned at Blue Ridge Foundation New York, a social innovation fund with a mission to help develop effective strategies for connecting people living in high poverty communities to the opportunities, resources, and support that they need to fulfill their full potential. The foundation incubates and launches innovative ventures that enhance economic and social mobility and facilitates connections among its network of grantees. As a summer associate, Rajib worked on a number of high-impact consulting projects that address critical capacity building challenges faced by the foundation's portfolio organizations, each of which are early stage nonprofits with strong growth potential. Beth completed several short-term consulting projects over the course of the summer with Blue Ridge's "portfolio" organizations, assisting in areas such as financial analysis, strategic planning, and organizational development. She also completed a project that helps to shape Blue Ridge's overall organizational direction.
Muhammed Mortezaee ’12 worked with The Financial Clinic, a nonprofit that works with lower income families across the U.S. to address their financial commitments and challenges and assist them in developing financial plans to achieve greater independence and mobility. The Clinic offers asset planning, debt planning, tax advice, financial education workshops, and legal assistance. Muhammed worked with the director of the Strategic Initiatives group and the director of Finance and Operations to develop a 12 month financial plan analyzing the minimum number of clients that need to be served each year in order for the department to breakeven. This framework will then be utilized as new products and services are developed and offered.
Alyssa Sankin ’13 worked at New Amsterdam Market, a public market that promotes economics development by supporting small businesses such as butchers, grocers, mongers, and other vendors who source, produce, distribute, and sell foods made with regional ingredients. As a summer business intern, she conducted research, collected and analyzed data and helped develop a business model that planed for the future growth of New Amsterdam Market. Additionally, she collected and analyzed data to demonstrate the regional economic impact of public markets as aggregations of small businesses that support regional agriculture.
Clara Sheets ’12 interned at the Financial Services Volunteer Corps (FSVC). She worked in Tunisia for a month to implement programs to further small business bank lending and to advance the availability of venture capital funding in Tunisia. Additionally, she helped to design future programs to take place in Tunisia to further the development of sound financial infrastructure as the country continues reforms. Following her time in Tunisia, she spent a month working at the New York headquarters recruiting expert volunteers for projects abroad, writing grant proposals for future projects and furthering FSVC's marketing initiatives.
Kristen Shields ’13 worked with The Department of Small Business Services (SBS). The organization's mission is to make it easier for businesses in New York City to form, do business, and grow by providing direct assistance to business owners, fostering neighborhood development in commercial districts, and linking employers to a skilled and qualified workforce. Kristen worked in the financial services and access to capital department. She focused on finishing the development of the restaurant financial projection model that is designed to assist restaurants with properly anticipating their financing needs.
Alia Smith ’13 worked at the New York City Department of Education via an Education Pioneers placement, together with the Center for Public Research and Leadership (CPRL). She was in the Office of Teacher Effectiveness, focusing on gaining support for a new teacher evaluation system that will be rolled out in the 2012-2013 academic year and will affect over 1,000 New York City teachers and tens of thousands of public school students.
Two students interned with Endeavor Global, a global nonprofit that aims to transform emerging countries' economies by supporting high impact entrepreneurship. Elizabeth Gulliver ’13 worked in Istanbul, Turkey, with Ciceksepeti, an online retailer. Ciceksepeti currently sells flowers and small gifts, though they recently received funding from Amazon and aim to expand to a similar platform. Elizabeth worked on marketing, business strategy and financial planning. Claudia Ojeda ’13 worked with the Endeavor Global Insight team based in NYC, and specifically focused on analyzing the growth of Endeavor's entrepreneurs relative to other groups of high-growth companies to understand why some entrepreneurs are higher-growth than others within Endeavor's portfolio. From this she developed recommendations on ways to help their entrepreneurs grow faster. She developed a marketing and communications strategy for sharing the findings of this project externally, including a report for public release, and helped to create internal systems and processes to implement these recommendations.
Ana Paula Gonzalez ’13, completed two impact investing internships in Mexico. IGNIA LLC, the first impact investing fund in Mexico, supports the founding and expansion of high growth social enterprises that serve the base of the socio-economic pyramid in Latin America, while creating attractive financial returns for its investors. Ana worked with one of IGNIA's portfolio companies that provides quality low cost housing to the poorest communities in Mexico. She also developed a strategy to sell houses through a new commercial channel using a franchise model. Her second internship was with Adobe Capital, a new fund supported by the platform of New Ventures Mexico at World Resources Institute (WRI). Adobe Capital is an impact investment fund focused on supporting the early growth of social and environmental small and growing businesses operating in base-of-the-pyramid communities. During her internship, Ana helped establish the Fund's processes regarding deal identification, analysis, filtering and selection. She also contributed to the establishment of clear guidelines to identify metrics to analyze and track social and environmental impact. Additionally, she acted as a liaison between Adobe Capital and the New Ventures Mexico business accelerator.
Elisa Kerr Joia ’13 and Mark Santangelo ’13 worked with I-Dev International, a management and strategy advisory firm to the development sector with offices in New York, Peru and Kenya. Elisa worked in their office in Peru, in the city of Cajamarca, to help develop and manage on-going projects throughout Latin America. Projects focused on economic development through the creation of viable and sustainable small and growing business at the base of the pyramid (BoP) providing BoP communities with the training, resources, and relationships needed to build financially-independent businesses. Mark's work focused primarily on I-DEV's expansion into the East African market, assisting with development business projects, the build out of I-DEV's network, and analysis of potential investment and project opportunities.
Muskan Chopra ’13 interned this summer as a Kiva Fellow for Kiva Microfunds. She focused her efforts on a start-up pilot in direct lending using M-PESA, a mobile payment system. She researched agencies and individuals to identify and endorse 0% interest loans funded by lenders directly to the mobile phones of borrowers. As a fellow in Nairobi, she helped the local MFI maximize the value that Kiva loans can have on their existing outreach and impact. In particular, she focused on expanding the MFI's Kiva network at the field level to include branches that distribute green loan products, like solar lanterns. She also conducted Borrower Verifications by communicating directly with microfinance borrowers in the field.
Sara Levin ’13 interned at salaUno, a start-up that delivers quality accessible and affordable healthcare services focused in conditions that affect large segments of the Mexican population. She worked on creating a business plan with a go-to-market strategy for labUno, which will distribute AuroLab products throughout Mexico, and helped to implement the organization's growth strategy.
Two students interned with E+Co, a nonprofit that makes clean energy investments in developing nations. E+Co's mission is to find outstanding entrepreneurs and work with them to establish clean energy businesses that mitigate climate change and reduce poverty while generating financial returns. Sean Kane ’12 worked in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania with entrepreneurs in E+Co's East Africa solar portfolio. He performed market research, implemented operational improvements, and performed due diligence on a preferred equity investment in a local solar distributor in Tanzania. Borja Olaso ’12 worked in the New York office to help E+Co assess the feasibility of their first grid connected PV Solar Plant, a breakthrough that is a potential foundational step for the organization to develop a broader renewable energy focus in the region.
Adam Klappholz ’12 worked with Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), a nonprofit located in Accra, Ghana that focuses on training Ghanaians in software development in order to spur economic development, job creation, and serve as an example to the rest of the world about the potential for Africa's high tech sector. MEST sends high performing Ghanaian students through a fully sponsored two year program of software and entrepreneurial development that culminates with students pitching their business plans and potentially receiving seed funding. Adam conducted interviews in the U.S. and Ghana and analyzed Accra's market in order to determine best practices for MEST's expansion into establishing an entrepreneurial ecosystem in Ghana.
Two students interned with TigerTrade, a B2B internet startup and social enterprise that connects Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the textile, apparel, footwear and furniture industry with buyers and distributors in developed economies, to increase trade and catalyze broad-based economic growth. TigerTrade is committed to fair trade, sustainability, and economic empowerment of local manufacturers. Max Tonconogy ’13 worked on business development, operations, and the company's expansion into Latin America. Dong Geun Shin ’13 worked to support the planning and implementation of new sales, product development, and marketing initiatives, while analyzing customer segments and competitors in addition to developing potential pricing models, revenue projections, and value-added service packages.
Emma Vaugh ’13 interned with Acumen Fund, an impact-investing firm that has invested more than $70 million over the past ten years to help eradicate poverty in some of the world's poorest regions. She helped to hone their media and partnership strategy, and to synchronize all media and investment data in a way that can maximize promotion for Acumen's mission. She also helped to strengthen the donor partnerships and explore new industries for potential partner relationships. Emma's work left Acumen in a stronger position for growth and continued global awareness.
Anjai Vyas ’12 worked with Healing Hands of Joy, which helps women who suffer from obstetric fistula in Ethiopia. She helped the executive director with a secondary loan program for women who work as safe motherhood ambassadors in the country, by developing criteria for loan distribution as well as reviewing their potential business ideas. She also analyzed many sources of data to demonstrate the severity of fistula and the need for action, researched maternal health issues in Africa, and helped to create strategies to address these issues.
Luis Alfredo Zambrano ’13 spent his summer interning for Enterprise Solutions to Poverty (ESP), a firm founded in 2006 with a clear goal: to double the income and assets of over 50 million low- income people by end 2014. Luis' involvement in projects related to inclusive finance and mobile banking which drew on his experience in the industry, and gave him experience working on strategies based in value chain financing and agri-finance. These projects aim to improve the lives of millions of people in China and Latin America.
Rebby Bliss ’13 interned with Karbone, a full service firm specializing in Renewable Energy and Environmental Markets. Karbone helps renewable energy technologies compete alongside traditional sources of energy and electricity. The company focuses on enabling renewable energy developers to reach their financing objectives and offers comprehensive services in environmental markets to structure environmental credit transactions. Rebby worked as a summer analyst with the capital advisory and research groups. Her responsibilities include developing financial models for the financing and construction of renewable energy projects within the US and researching renewable energy market regulations.
Jaissy Lorenzo ’13 interned at the Altura Capital Group, a women- and Hispanic-owned investment advisory and research services firm in the emerging and diverse managers field. She reported to the Head of Research and CFO and worked within the Asset Management Division to research undiscovered and under-utilized investment managers through the proprietary database. This project involved researching the performance record of managers among various asset classes, including the typical excess returns of managers, "batting averages" across asset classes, and sizing the manager universe.
Liz Ichniowski ’13 worked at Confluence Philanthropy created by the Rockefeller Brother Fund and the Rockefeller Foundation as an associate/fellow for the Sustainable Food and Fisheries Initiative. Confluence has partnered with the Packard Foundation to help educate grantmakers about mission-related investing strategies and to build out MRI vehicles in this burgeoning space. Liz was the face of Confluence for all MRI related events and led the confluence team in the organization of the initiatives. Liz looked at program-related investments, private equity funds, and public funds to facilitate the creation of alternative financing streams for the food/fisheries initiative. Liz's final product, "Defining the Path Forward for Financing in Sustainable Fisheries," includes a report, a webinar briefing about MRI, and a set of recommendations about how to move the field forward.
Two students interned with Jalia Ventures, an investment firm that provides growth capital to minority-owned businesses with a social mission, with a focus on healthcare, education, information technology and environmentally friendly innovations. As a summer associate, Renae Merle ’12 reviewed business plans, met with entrepreneurs and performed due diligence. She also studied Jalia's operational structure and made recommendations for improvement. Donnel Baird ’13 helped Jalia to evaluate new investment opportunities in addition to helping to launch a national business plan competition for graduates of HBCUs.
Emily Currin ’12 worked for mGood, a mobile crowdfunding platform that helps nonprofits fundraise. Emily's primary responsibility were to own and refine mGood's pitch deck and financial model, with the goal of convincing angel investors and/or venture capitalists, both from the traditional as well as social enterprise spaces, to invest in mGood.
Three students interned with CityHealthWorks! (CHW!) a nonprofit start-up venture which aims to empower individuals in low-income communities to embrace better, healthier lives. Equipped with agile technologies, CHW! trains peer coaches to motivate their neighbors to prevent and better manage chronic diseases. Jonathan Goldsmith ’12 served as Chief Operating Officer. The goal of his work was to build and manage relationships with partner organizations that will help provide input on the design and evaluation of the wellness promotion strategies, build a ROI calculator that is tailored to the target population and the unique nature of the program design, and ensure that the financial model responds to changes in the operating model. Mindy Lin ’12 revised the communication materials, developed content for the website and assisted with fundraising efforts. This has allowed CHW! to reach a broader audience and make a long-lasting impact on underserved communities in NYC. Stefani Torrieri ’12 helped CHW! to design and create its wellness and nutrition program, a critical piece to the organization's success. She was responsible for meeting with local "experts" from the East Harlem community and healthy businesses that sell services and products to low-income communities with the goal of making the program more responsible to feedback from members of the community. She also developed content for food demonstration workshops that conveyed knowledge about healthy cooking and relevant nutritional and health knowledge. Lastly, Stefanie helped determine an effective strategy to negotiate discounts on healthy food products and services to members in order to increase motivation to make healthier life choices.
Hahn Wook Kim ’13 worked at Impact Investment Exchange (IIX), supporting the Impact Partners Team to launch Impact Exchange. Impact Exchange will be Asia's first regulated social stock exchange which, once operational, will allow impact investors to easily access for-profit and nonprofit social enterprises and invest in their equity or bond issuances. He assessed the eligibility of social enterprises for listing, providing them the opportunity to raise capital through the exchange platform, as well as worked with the team to set up the Impact Guarantee Fund to leverage investors' investments thereby allowing organizations to scale their impact.
Two students interned at NYC Seed, a venture fund that helps to build a sustainable ecosystem for entrepreneurship in New York City. Under the leadership of Owen Davis EMBA '08, NYC Seed provides funding, mentoring and support to create the next generation of companies in NYC. In addition to supporting existing portfolio companies, Jigar Patel ’13 analyzed business plans and performed due diligence to identify new ventures to add to the portfolio. He participated in all aspects of the VC process, including attending Investment Committee meetings and funding negotiations. As a new initiative this year, Jigar was also responsible for planning and execution of a NYC-based enterprise software accelerator. Steven Moore ’12 worked with the investment fund as well as the SeedStart Program. Steven analyzed market opportunities, evaluated companies seeking funding, performed due diligence on potential companies and assisted in negotiations that led to final investments. Another aspect of the internship was to continue development of the SeedStart program which aims to build a sustainable ecosystem for entrepreneurship in New York City. By partnering with both public and private entities, Steven helped NYC Seed lead a program that involved around 20 local companies.
Aaron Mercurio ’13 worked at Core Innovation Capital as a Summer Associate supporting the general partner. The summer term involved quantitative and qualitative research, due diligence, impact auditing and analysis, and fund marketing and mission support. During his internship, Aaron worked with leading entrepreneurs and financiers in the financial services space helping to design and innovate market-leading products and services to support the U.S.'s large and growing unbanked and underserved population. The fund was launched by, and is strategic partners with, the Center for Financial Services Innovation, the leader in underbanked strategy across the financial services landscape.
Lindsay Norcott ’12 spent her summer at ImpactAssets, a nonprofit financial services company that catalyzes impact investing through innovative impact products and field building. Working under the Head of Strategic Initiatives, Lindsay was responsible for a wide variety of projects. She designed and implemented ImpactAssets' social media strategy, executed partnerships with the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) and Global Impact Investing Rating System (GIIRS) for the launch of the 2012 ImpactAssets 50, and worked with Jed Emerson, co-author of Impact Investing with Antony Bugg-Levine, on the development of Issue Briefs to advance the field of impact investing.
Alia Rafeh ’12 joined Charity Connector, a social enterprise and online service that allows smaller nonprofits to connect and form partnerships with larger for-profit organizations. Alia worked as the business development and marketing intern where she cultivated partnerships and developed a marketing strategy to increase Charity Connector's brand awareness. Alia's responsibilities included researching the nonprofit technology space, and providing strategic and creative thinking on Charity Connector's marketing efforts.
Two students interned at Sustainable Health Enterprise (SHE), a New York City nonprofit and for- profit in Rwanda which focuses on market-based solutions to international development. SHE's main initiative is SHE28, which addresses girls' and women's lack of access to affordable menstrual pads in Africa, which can cause them to miss school and/or work. SHE is currently helping women roll out a franchise model in Rwanda, manufacturing and distributing affordable, eco-friendly menstrual pads by sourcing local, inexpensive raw materials, such as banana fibers. Christina Shim ’12 interned in the New York office, where she contributed towards a branding and market assessment analysis to see what opportunities might exist for SHE in the U.S. Elisabeth Chasia ’12 pursued business development initiatives that strengthened the organization's long term sustainability and increased its social impact. She research the product line extension opportunities that will enable SHE to develop and manufacture new low cost products that address overlooked public health needs in developing countries.