Summer Fellows 2013

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Nonprofit and Public Management

Amy Anenberg ’13, Jennifer McCaleb ’14 and Emily Rosenfield ’14 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, attacking poverty at its root causes and rigorously evaluating programs to measure results. Amy interned with the Jobs and Economic Security portfolio, where she monitored, analyzed and reported on the performance of existing grantees within the context of Robin Hood’s metrics and developed detailed written recommendations for support or rejection. Jennifer interned with the Management Assistance team where she reviewed historical grants in order to confirm and improve quantitative and qualitative assessment tools. For her summer project, Emily assessed the workforce models of grantee organizations in the Jobs and Economic Security Portfolio.

Julia Barmeier ’14 interned at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority/NYC Transit in the Strategic Initiatives team. She worked on two projects, one involving the optimization of subway track maintenance between nighttime and daytime crews and the other improving the HR onboarding process for professional and hourly workers to enhance efficiency and support the organization’s operational and strategic needs.

Preeti Bhattacharji ’14 worked for the Department of Small Business Services and ImpactAssets. The Department of Small Business Services is dedicated to making 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. Preeti worked on the Corporate Alliance Program (CAP), which focuses on capacity-building initiatives for small businesses, supplier diversity, and Minority- and Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs). ImpactAssets is a nonprofit financial services company created to help solve the world's toughest problems by catalyzing investment capital for maximum environmental, social and financial impact. Preeti focused on building the ImpactAssets 50 (IA 50), the first open-source, publicly published database of experienced private debt and equity impact investment fund managers.

Courtney Catallo ’13, Stephanie Ng ’13 and Stephanie Weichsel ’14 worked with Columbia Business School’s Social Enterprise Program. Courtney worked on a variety of projects throughout the summer, including identifying resources for the Business School community interested in becoming involved on a nonprofit board. Additionally, Courtney worked on streamlining and improving current the Nonprofit Board Leadership Program (NBLP) processes by updating the NBLP handbook, researching similar programs at peer schools, and assessing the various impacts of the NBLP program. Stephanie Ng worked to assess the program’s social impact. This project involved compiling social impact metrics to highlight the work of SEP and how it has impacted students and alumni. Deliverables included a range of metrics that the SEP should consider on its impact on its various stakeholders, as well as a plan for gathering and assessing this data. Stephanie Weichsel finalized a downloadable resource guide for future NBLP student leaders and oversaw the development of marketing materials for new NBLP initiatives. 

Jennifer Dyck-Sprout ’14, Elizabeth Elston ’14, and Matt Torell ’14 worked at the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) as Education Pioneers summer fellows. Jennifer worked as a Strategy Intern with the Teacher Leadership Project in the Department of Academics, Performance and Support to evaluate the impact and effectiveness of a new professional development program designed to empower thousands of public school teachers and thus improve student outcomes. She also enhanced the program’s operation and led its expansion for the 2013-2014 academic year. Elizabeth was placed in the Office of Achievement Resources where she served as project manager to support the expansion of the new teacher evaluation system growing to scale during the 2013-2014 school year, going from a pilot program in 30 schools to a full-scale project in 1700 schools. Elizabeth was responsible for analyzing data and identifying key insights to draw conclusions about teacher feedback and satisfaction with the new roll-out. Matt assisted the Research & Policy Support Group, which implements specialized assessments and analyzes yearly testing data. Matt’s primary deliverable was to develop an analysis plan for the Middle School Quality Initiative (MSQI) assessment data and build an experimental research design to determine the effectiveness of the intervention. The MSQI project is focused on improving literacy of NYCDOE middle school students.

Annie Koo ’14 worked with Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), a nonprofit affordable housing lender based in New York. Undergoing extensive organizational change after the 2008 housing crisis, Annie worked closely with the corporate strategy team to develop CPC’s Five Year Plan. She also helped the financial planning and analysis team to develop content for an offering memorandum to investors, including evaluation of portfolio performance, new loans, and overall financial health.

Allie Levy ’14 and Samuel Wollner ’14 interned at New York-Presbyterian this summer. Allie was at the Allen Hospital, a community-based hospital that is one of five New York-Presbyterian locations. Allie worked closely with the operations team to develop and implement operational efficiencies, supporting the new healthcare reform environment. She gained experience in how to manage a community hospital, with projects ranging from supporting process and patient flow, to improving emergency management and generating financial and operational analyses reports. Sam interned with the Office of Strategy, a dynamic, eight-person, corporate level department whose members serve as internal strategic consultants, project managers and change leaders at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Sam worked on projects that include conducting internal and market research and analysis, meeting with senior medical and administrative personnel, developing strategic plans and helping to design programs to drive change at New York-Presbyterian.

Maria Noy ’14 interned at the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation (GJDC), a nonprofit that works with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to advance responsible development and improve quality of life in Jamaica and surrounding areas of Queens. Maria worked with the Real Estate Development team on various projects, financial analysis of offers and development pro-formas. Projects included a parking analysis, grant application assessment, and retail attraction. More broadly, through GJDC, Maria was involved in coordinating the efforts of a variety of organizations to help bring about positive changes to the community of Jamaica.

Prentice Onayemi ’14 worked with Exploring the Metropolis, a nonprofit that analyzes and addresses the real estate needs of performing artists in NYC. He analyzed the needs of artists living and/or working in Queens as well as their presenting facilities and audiences. He then shared his recommendations on policy, infrastructure, and strategy to the performing arts community, elected officials, and philanthropists.

Lauren Ryan ’14 worked at the Carnegie Corporation as an Education Pioneers summer fellow. She focused on the 100kin10 movement sponsored by Carnegie Corporation. 100kin10 is a movement focusing on creating, training, and supporting one hundred thousand new K-12 teachers of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) subjects to ensure that future students are inspired to work in the STEM fields critical to the United States economy. Lauren worked with the variety of for-profit and nonprofit partners that have committed to the 100kin10 goal to ensure that the collective talents’ of partners are leverage effectively.

International Development

Filipa Castro ’14 and Rita Silva ’14 interned with salaUno, an eye clinic in Mexico City that contributes to the eradication of unnecessary blindness in Mexico by offering affordable and high quality eye care services, focused on low and mid-income customers. As summer associates, both Filipa and Rita reviewed business plans, helped prepare for salaUno´s initial round of external financing, devised a plan to improve efficiency and effectiveness of diagnosis centers and helped develop a microfinance project, for patients to finance their own operations through microloans.

Christina Chow ’13 worked at Embrace Innovations, a for-profit social enterprise that makes low-cost infant warmers for premature and low-weight babies in the developing world. Embrace is an American company that is based in Bangalore, India. As a Strategy and Marketing Fellow, Christina worked on new product development to build the product portfolio for Embrace. Her research will help the company expand their line of products beyond infant warmers, allowing them to offer more affordable healthcare solutions to patient populations in the developing world.

Meri Crowther ’14 and Sheila Lalani ’14 worked at LivelyHoods, a nonprofit sales network that creates jobs for youth in Kenyan slums through the distribution of socially-responsible products. Meri served as an advisor to the organization on operations, business development, monitoring, and evaluation. In this role, she addressed optimization and process efficiency issues by evaluating options and testing solutions. She also helped LivelyHoods further develop strategic relationships with funders, product suppliers, and NGOs while supporting the evaluation of key impact indicators in relation to Sales Agents and consumers. Sheila worked on a supply chain project, which helped LivelyHoods in its quest to open three more retail stores. In a region of the world where resources are scarce and infrastructure is unreliable, innovative inventory and procurement processes are vital. Sheila put a system in place that enabled LivelyHoods to order and track product efficiently, so that base of the pyramid consumers have access to affordable products.

Uzayr Jeenah ’14 worked at Schulze Global Investments, a double bottom line-focused emerging markets private equity fund that aims to achieve beneficial developmental impact in addition to strong financial returns. The firm has the first Ethiopia focused fund; having raised $100mn predominantly from European developmental agencies. As a strategy and operations advisor to the fund, Uzayr worked in Ethiopia to develop growth strategies for some of the portfolio companies and helped to improve their operations. Some of the portfolio companies included a coffee roasting company looking to export to the US, and a cement manufacturer trying to expand their operations.

Adaobi Kanu ’14 worked with the Andean Collection, a socially responsible retail company that reduces poverty in disadvantaged communities in South America through the creation and sales of jewelry. Andean Collection also supports several social development programs like scholarships and small business assistance in the communities where they work. Adaobi worked with the company’s founder and president and the director of business development on market analytics, inventory cost reduction strategies, and developing a strategic growth plan for the company’s intended expansion in to European Markets.

Shintaro Kohmoto ’14 worked with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, which aims to create opportunities for people to escape poverty by mobilizing sources of finance and promoting private enterprise development. He worked to promote the use of green power, including solar and wind, at mobile network tower sites in remote rural areas around the world, and conducted competitive analysis on the market, value chain and industry players.

Vidula Menon ’14 worked at The Tony Elemulu Foundation (TTEF), a foundation dedicated to the promotion of Africa’s economic development by enhancing the competitiveness of the African private sector. As a summer intern, Vidula worked with one of TTEF’s portfolio organizations, Wakanow, to develop Nigeria’s first sports and entertainment center. Working directly with the Wakanow CEO, Vidula focused on conducting research, benchmark analyses and financial modeling, which helped her develop a business plan to present to potential investors and stakeholders.

Joe Maddens ’14 and Marc Nadeau ’13 worked at the Documentation Center of Cambodia, a nonprofit institution that documents the Cambodian genocide and the Khmer Rouge era, offers mission-related programs, and runs a museum, school and research center. Joe helped the organization transition from a donor-driven, project-focused organization to a self-sustainable model, by creating a business plan for a new institute and developing investment options to raise capital. Marc also worked as a Business Associate to identify target markets and recommend marketing strategies for the Koh Keh temple site near Siem Reap in Cambodia. He conducted cost/revenue analysis for the Koh Keh area, and local market analysis in order to recommend revenue strategies, and provided input on a proposed work plan for strategic development in the area. Marc also worked for African Wildlife Fund (AWF) where he was responsible for developing documentation on existing enterprises, including the conservation rationale for establishing such enterprises, their financing structures, and their community benefits. In addition he assessed the financial results of these enterprises, including the return on AWF’s investment and the financial benefits received by communities.

Sarah McCoy ’13 worked at Bridge International Academies, a Kenya-based social enterprise whose mission is to provide every child with the chance to have a high-quality primary education, regardless of their family’s income. Bridge founds and runs primary schools targeted for the bottom-of-the-pyramid market, currently operating 134 academies throughout Kenya. Sarah worked cross-functionally with Bridge’s teams to streamline organizational processes to ensure that Bridge’s growth occurred in an efficient and high-quality manner.

Ryan Thompson ’14 worked at South Pacific Business Development (SPBD). SPBD is a group of microfinance networks in Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, and the Solomon Islands dedicated to eradicating poverty by empowering women in poor rural villages with the opportunity to grow and sustain income-generating micro-enterprise. Ryan managed the product launch of a new loan product geared towards successful existing SPBD clients looking to grow past the current offerings of its microfinance networks.

Ivan Titkov ’14 worked for Innovando la Tradicion, located in Oaxaca, Mexico. The company helps local artisans promote their ceramic and pottery products across the country and globally by helping with marketing, product design, inventory management, etc. Innovando also makes sure that production runs in an environmentally-friendly way (e.g., their glaze contains no lead) and that millenary traditions are preserved and transferred to the next generations of artisans.

Gerardo Trueba ’14 worked at Enterprise Solutions to Poverty (ESP), a nonprofit, New York based organization that mobilizes and supports about 200 leading companies, banks and entrepreneurs in building profitable and inclusive businesses that incorporate millions of low-income people as suppliers, distributors and consumers of asset building products. Gerardo’s work included the identification of best practices to mitigate risks and increase assets of micro-entrepreneurs and the development of an agriculture finance performance-benchmarking framework to assess institutional readiness to enter or scale up activities in agriculture finance, and assess ongoing performance.

Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability

Lauren Behr ’14 worked with Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), a nonprofit business membership organization that develops sustainable business strategies and solutions through consulting, research, and cross-sector collaboration. Lauren worked with clients in the Consumer Products industry to develop sustainable supply chain, manufacturing and ethical sourcing strategies by focusing primarily on engagement with and programming for female factory workers.

Mallika Kumar ’14 worked at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), an international environmental advocacy group. Mallika worked at NRDC’s Energy and Transportation Program, where she assisted a team of policy staff on projects for advancing industrial energy efficiency. In this role, she researched and analyzed various proposals for states and utilities to increase deployment of industrial energy efficiency technologies, drafted a plan for executing next steps on specific proposals with partners, such as Northeast Utilities, and liaised with utilities, industrial end-users, industry, and state and federal government experts, as well as other NRDC partners including the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, and the Consortium for Energy Efficiency.

Alex Melecki ’14 worked with CommonBond, which is changing the student loan market by helping students obtain low-cost education loans from alumni of their schools. For every student who completes his or her CommonBond-funded education in the U.S., the organization funds a year of schooling for a child at the African School of Excellence. During his internship, Alex designed and executed a project plan to enhance customer experience, helping the organization to expand from supporting just one school to servicing 20. For this project, he did market and regulatory research, identified and interviewed stakeholder groups, performed conjoint analyses to ascertain customer preferences, and proposed actions and implementation strategies directly to the co-founders.

Atif Qadir ’14 worked at Honest Buildings, a startup based in New York and London, which promotes sustainability in the built environment through a free, publicly-available online platform of buildings that showcases buildings’ key physical and energy metrics. As a B-Corporation, Honest Buildings maintains standards of social and environmental performance, while aiming to enhance awareness of and accelerate the demand for more sustainable building projects and transactions. Atif worked directly with the CEO on major operational initiatives: improving the identification scheme that drives the matching algorithm, monetizing the HB Match process, and implementing a robust customer relationship management system.

Dyanna Salcedo ’15 worked at a start-up nonprofit called The Concordia Summit, an organization that facilitates public-private partnerships (P3) by convening public and private sector leaders to address social ailments. She worked with the director of research and development to develop quantitative tools that identified factors of P3 success. She also worked closely with the rest of the management team to help grow the organization through marketing and strategic plans.

Samit Shah ’13 worked at Tau Investment Management, an investment firm that seeks to generate financial returns through the social and environmental transformation of its portfolio companies. Tau takes industry laggards along these metrics and transforms them into leaders. Samit’s work at Tau included research regarding potential social and environmental transformation levers in the consumer electronics and garment sectors and investment analysis for target companies.

Amanda Wood ’14 interned with SoFi (Social Finance, Inc.). SoFi is a start-up transforming the student loan industry by connecting student and graduate borrowers with alumni investors both economically and socially. SoFi was founded to fix the broken $1 trillion US student loan market. It offers an innovative approach to address this problem using the power of social communities to transform the industry. SoFi connects students and alumni through a dedicated lending pool and a social community approach where students, alumni and schools all benefit. Alumni earn a compelling bottom line return, students receive a lower loan rate than their private or federal options, and both sides benefit from the connections formed.

Social Entrepreneurship

Liz Ichniowski ’13 worked at EcoWatch, a website that aggregates news articles focusing on issues of sustainability. Liz worked as an associate tasked specifically to build out the business plan as EcoWatch sought ways to monetize its brand and website. Currently, EcoWatch intends to expand the brand and website by creating new verticals, including an eco-product, eco-lifestyle and, most ambitiously, a crowd-funding vertical for sustainable projects that lack proper finances to see an idea to fruition. Liz was tasked with understanding these opportunities, both in terms of market based research and financial feasibility.

Hahn Wook Kim ’13 interned with Ashoka—Innovators for the Public, a citizen organization which financially supports leading social entrepreneurs while building a global network of peers and professionals on which they can rely. Ashoka has 3,000 Fellows in over 70 countries. Hanook worked closely with the Global Venture/Fellowship (V/F) team leading two new projects: analyzing V/F’s financial sustainability and the V/F knowledge capture plan. Hanook discovered and diagnosed financial challenges for sustainability of over 30 Ashoka country offices while enabling organizational learning by synthesizing the insights and experiences collected from Ashoka’s network of social entrepreneurs.

Cambyse Parsi ’13 worked with CapitalWorks Impact Fund, which aims to provide growth and expansion financing to for- and nonprofit social enterprises. He developed financial analysis on social enterprises to be used as test cases for potential investees, and helped design debt and debt-related investment structures. He also worked on the fund’s business strategy, analyzing the landscape for debt products for social enterprises, and contributed to the fund’s social impact analysis.

Colleen Poynton ’14 worked at Core Innovation Capital and Endeavor Global. Core Innovation Capital is a venture fund that invests in highly scalable, innovative companies that deliver financial products and services to underbanked customers in the United States. As a Summer Associate supporting the Managing Partner, Colleen executed market and company research, investment analysis, and due diligence on prospective investments. She worked closely with leading entrepreneurs and financiers to help develop market-leading products and services for this large and fast-growing customer segment. Colleen also helped Core strengthen the ecosystem of innovation and investment in financial technologies through fund marketing, strategic outreach and mission support. Colleen also worked at Endeavor Global, where she was part of the Entrepreneur Search & Selection team. She worked directly with country portfolio heads to conduct due diligence and analyze the management teams, business models, target markets, and competitors of prospective Endeavor entrepreneurs. Her analysis culminated in the creation of key company profiles, which were used by Endeavor’s global network of mentors and investors during the 2013 International Selection Panel held in Palo Alto, CA.

Jon Saunders ’14 worked for Tugende, a for-profit social enterprise based in Kampala, Uganda. Tugende helps safe, reliable motorcycle taxi (boda-boda) drivers buy their own motorcycles, giving them the means to control their own tools of employment and kick start a path to financial independence. During his time with Tugende, Jon focused on financial modeling helping Tugende better understand their own operations and make the company more appealing to investors. Jon also developed a program to help Tugende gather and analyze the overall social impact these micro-loans were having on the driver’s lives. In addition, he worked closely with the CEO developing Tugende’s forward-looking strategy.

Jennifer Shea ’14 worked with DeansList, an education technology start-up that provides highly customizable, cloud-based software to help educators track student data in order to improve community culture and student behavior. Jen served as a marketing and business development intern where she utilized her marketing research skills to narrow down DeansList’s target customer segments, develop a marketing plan focused on addressing schools’ needs, and refine the organization’s sales strategy. She was fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in pitches to angel investors looking to support for-profit organizations with an overriding social mission, engage in sales meetings, and meet with leaders in the social entrepreneurship space.

Marcos Sheeran ’13 worked at NYC Seed, a venture fund that helps to build a sustainable ecosystem for entrepreneurship in New York City. Marcos analyzed market opportunities, evaluated companies seeking funding, performed due diligence on potential companies and assisted in negotiations that led to final investments. In addition, Marcos contributed to the development of the SeedStart program, an intensive 12-week program designed to help entrepreneurs focused on the next-generation of enterprise software to launch new ventures in New York City.

Yael Silverstein ’13 worked at Inspire Capital, a social enterprise dedicated to enhancing the field through its programs that support grassroots nonprofit organizations develop revenues streams. Inspire Capital works with forward-thinking social enterprises to optimize their core business and explore ways to monetize that business to support their social mission without requiring grants or donations. Inspire Capital also educates donors about helping nonprofits pursue sustainability as social enterprises. Yael worked with the founder on product development and online marketing. She developed the collateral for its nonprofit capacity building programs and matching process with private sector partners. She was also responsible for developing strategic recommendations and providing content for online channels.