SEI February 2019 Newsletter

In this Issue of SEI

This is this first edition of the SEI Newsletter for the Spring 2019 academic semester. This also marks the tenth year of the SEI Newsletter, and we are grateful for the work and insight of our students and the SEI Student Association over the years. In this edition, Professor Shaughnessy shares some thoughts as we begin the new year, highlighting stories of hope, altruism and resilience. Students write about their international co-op experiences and emerging social enterprises in sustainability and micro-finance in South Asia and the United States.

It's not too late to take advantage of what SEI has to offer this semester. Check out our upcoming events for more information on what's to come!

From the Founder & Executive Director

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A Few Thoughts as We Begin a New Year
By Dennis Shaughnessy
It’s our tenth year for the SEI Newsletter, and we continue to be so impressed with the ideas and writing of our students. We’re grateful for all of the student work that goes into producing each edition of the Newsletter, and especially for Natascha Elbech and Eleanor Patten who are acting as our student editors this semester. Read more here.


Featured Read

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SEI Student Association Project Opportunities
By Juli Kloza

At our student association, SEISA, we currently have four active projects that are looking for some additional student assistance this semester. Read more here about these exciting projects and how you could contribute!

Co-Op Spotlight

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English is the Key to the Lock of Success
By Rebekah Davis
At home, interactions with strangers are usually short and uninspiring. “How’s your day” “Good thanks, you?” However, here in Zanzibar, locals seek out English-speaking tourists and make small talk simply to improve their English skills. Read more here.

In the News

The Push for Sustainable Living One Day at a Time
By Mason Fitzpatrick
With a hybrid of for-profit restaurant partnerships and sustainable consulting, and non-profit advocacy and outreach, Green Monday hopes to make sustainable living “viral and actionable.”
Read more here.

Mlinda: Creating a Brighter, Sustainable Future
by Charlotte Fall
In India, 20% of the population, or 240 million people, live without access to electricity and nearly 220 million of those citizens live in rural areas. Mlinda is a powerful social enterprise working to reduce this number by supplying rural communities with alternative solar energy sources, in turn reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Read more here.

Rethinking the Concept of Impact Lending: Rukula
by Kate Secrest
Most financial institutions today focus only on serving “prime” borrowers, those with verifiable incomes or sufficient collateral to back them. Rukula works to address this issue by offering credit to financially excluded individuals in Sri Lanka in an easy, safe and transparent way. Read more here.

How Credit Unions Fill the Need in Financial Services Deserts
By Natascha Elbech
While bank accounts can provide structure and financial security, many Americans struggle to build savings or secure their assets without a sufficient income. This is a particular reality for New York City, as New Yorkers are more likely to be unbanked or underbanked than the rest of the country. The Lower East Side’s Peoples Federal Credit Union is providing capital and much needed financial services to people who are not typically served by traditional financial institutions. Read more here.

Unlocking the Potential of Inner Cities with ICIC
By Eleanor Patten
Nearly a quarter of the poverty within the United States is located in inner cities. The Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) is a Boston based research organization making strides to address poverty in the inner city through economic development Read more here.

Are Income Share Agreements a Plausible Solution to the Student Debt Crisis?
By Samuel Leadley
It is widely known that the cost of attending college in the United States has dramatically increased in the past few decades. This economic barrier has denied countless families the ability to send their children to college or caused students take on excessive amounts of debt. Although the cost of being denied a higher education is not expressly quantifiable the cost of assuming high levels of student loan debt is. Read more here.

Speaker Series


Co-Founder of Promethean Power: Sam White
By Juli Kloza and Natascha Elbech

On February 6th, Sam White, co-founder of Promethean Power, joined the Social Enterprise Institute for our Speaker Series to speak to students about his unintended journey to becoming a social entrepreneur. Read more here.


Upcoming Events

SEISA General Meeting - February 20th, 8-9pm, 001 Snell
SEI Speaker Series: Dan Lyons, Author of Lab Rats: How to Silicon Valley Made Work Miserable for the Rest of the US - February 28th, 6-8pm, Alumni Center at Columbus Place

Jobs & Internships

▪ First Book, Director, Strategic Alliances (Washington, DC)
▪ Kiva, Manager, Risk and Credit Operations (San Francisco, CA)
▪ Build Change, Director of Institutional Partnerships (Washington, DC)
▪ Root Capital, Fellowship Program (Cambridge, MA)
▪ Ceres, Summer Internship, Corporate Sustainability Research (Boston, MA)
▪ Initiative for a Competitive Inner City, Development Associate (Boston, MA)
First Book, Director, Strategic Alliances (Washington, DC)
Kiva, Manager, Risk and Credit Operations (San Francisco, CA)
Build Change, Director of Institutional Partnerships (Washington, DC)
Root Capital, Fellowship Program (Cambridge, MA)
Ceres, Summer Internship, Corporate Sustainability Research (Boston, MA)
Initiative for a Competitive Inner City, Development Associate (Boston, MA)

Feel like you have something to share?

We are always looking for newsletter contributors! Contact Natascha at or Eleanor at for more information.

Contact Us

For all inquires, please con­tact the Social Enter­prise Insti­tute Student Association at For more information, check out the SEI Website.

360 Huntington Ave
Boston, Massachusetts 02115

Disclaimer: The content of this newsletter is developed by undergraduate students. Submissions are solicited and in some cases edited by students, with the guidance of SEI staff. Nothing herein has been specifically endorsed by the DMSB.

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