Olivia DrakeMay 16, 20227min
Two first-generation college students are working to help the planet, one garment at a time. As cofounders of the sustainable fashion startup, Infinitely, Nimra Karamat ’23 and Ashley Cardenas '23 are creating high-quality, affordable clothing that is "ready to take down the world of fast fashion." "Brands that greenwash and benefit off of the backs of underpaid workers in underdeveloped countries are the top sellers in fashion," Cardenas said. "This shouldn’t be our reality. Through Infinitely, we want to inspire people of all backgrounds and identities to lead sustainable lives and help people understand how fast fashion is damaging for…

Rachel Wachman '24March 7, 20227min
Each year since 2013, the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship (PCSE) awards three $5,000 grants to students creating a social impact through business ventures. This year, PCSE Seed Grants were awarded Handom (Aldrean Alogon ’23 and Leonard Majaducon ’25), Nebula (Kya Lloyd ’22 and Jahmir Duran-Abreu ’20), and Outspoken (Akansha Singh ’23). From a mentorship program for students in the Philippines, to a digital marketplace for black entrepreneurs, to an online literacy program for women and girls in rural India, this year's winning projects are shaping their communities in unique ways. Each year since 2013, the PCSE awards three $5,000…

Olivia DrakeApril 6, 20218min
Wesleyan's organic farm, an eco-friendly clothing store, and a clean water supplier in New Jersey are the recipients of the 2021 Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grants. These student-led social ventures will each receive $5,000 in unrestricted funds as well as training, advising, mentoring, incubator workspace, and other resources from the Patricelli Center. On April 2, a pool of finalists pitched their projects, virtually, to a panel of expert judges. Applicants were assessed on their project design, leadership qualities, and potential for social or environmental impact. Seasoned Seed Grant judge and Patricelli Center Advisory Board member Syed Ali '13…

Olivia DrakeMarch 23, 20212min
When Emily McEvoy '22 began her college career at Wesleyan in 2018, she felt a deep sense of detachment from the local environment. At a campus in the middle of her home state, how could this be? The insularity, she says, was jarring, and she decided to dedicate her time to combat this issue. McEvoy immediately became involved with several local organizations, including Middletown's North End Action Team, and the student cohort of volunteers who helped staff their office. Most recently, McEvoy has been an organizer with the Middletown Mutual Aid Collective, which has raised close to $70,000 to support…

Olivia DrakeMay 17, 20201min
A clothing brand that promotes education and discussion of mental health and wellness is the winner of the Wesleyan COLLISION Spring 2020 pitch competition sponsored by the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship. Created by Blake Northrop '22, Be Better consists of the clothing brand itself—which highly values customer participation and artist collaboration—as well as an online community forum for followers and members to connect, discuss, and share their stories about mental health. On May 5, Northrop and more than dozen other aspiring student entrepreneurs pitched their social benefit business ideas. Watch a recording of the Pitch Night online here. (more…)

Cynthia RockwellDecember 17, 20192min
Eleven students from CSPL 239, Startup Incubator: The Art and Science of Launching Your Idea, took turns standing before an audience of their peers and members of Middletown's Chamber of Commerce on the second floor of Main Street Market. Each offered a polished presentation detailing the need for their proposed startup, their mission, target market, and success indicators for the business, nonprofit, or community-based program they imagine. The evening was hosted through Collision-CT and the Middletown Entrepreneurs Workspace Plus (MEWS+). The course was made possible by CTNext and the Newman’s Own Foundation. Taught this year by Visiting Assistant Professor of…

Laurie KenneyMay 9, 20192min
Shayna Beaumont ’19, an environmental studies and Hispanic literatures and cultures double major from New York, has been selected as a finalist in Map the System, a global competition that asks participants to research the ecosystem of an issue they care about. Her project, “Food Justice as a Platform for Environmental Equality in Harlem” tackles the issue of food deserts in the neighborhoods of East and Central Harlem in New York City. "All my life I’ve grown up in food deserts where the unhealthy fast food chains and liquor stores are advertised, instead of healthy eating," she said in a Coexistdaily blog.…

Olivia DrakeMarch 4, 20191min
On March 4, not three, but four student-run ventures received $5,000 seed grants from the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship (PCSE). The unrestricted funding is accompanied with training, advising, mentoring, incubator workspace, and other resources from the Patricelli Center. On March 1, six finalists pitched for a panel of judges in Allbritton 311. "As always, the competition was steep, and the judges had a tough time selecting grantees," said Makaela Kingsley ’98, director of the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship. "In fact, this year they decided to make a special donation to the Patricelli Center so we could offer four grants instead…

Olivia DrakeNovember 21, 20182min
While 94 percent of children from wealthy Filipino households attend high school, only 69 percent from poor households continue to get a high school education after graduating from grade school (UNESCO). Through a nonprofit venture called SALIN Ed., Frederick Corpuz '20 is working to create an inexpensive, sustainable alternative to classroom learning that enables 10- to 12-year-olds in the Philippines to become independent, successful learners through an online program. To advance his social entrepreneurial skills and better his venture, Corpuz applied to participate in the 11th annual Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) conference, held Oct. 19–21 in Chicago, Ill. (more…)

Lauren RubensteinOctober 11, 20182min
The United Nations has named Ahmed Badr ’20 to the 17 Young Leaders for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), class of 2018. The UN Young Leaders, a flagship initiative of the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, recognizes young people for their exceptional leadership and contributions to a more sustainable world. “It's an absolute pleasure and privilege to be selected for this program,” said Badr, who is the second youngest UN Young Leader ever and the only Iraqi and American in this year's class. “It's an immense honor and responsibility to be a representative of these multiple identities and…

Lauren RubensteinJune 12, 20187min
In this recurring feature in The Wesleyan Connection, we highlight some of the latest news stories about Wesleyan and our alumni. Recent Wesleyan News The Washington Post: "Our Graduates Should Answer Cynicism and Insults with Inquiry and Reflection" In this op-ed, President Michael S. Roth '78 expresses his hope that this year's graduates will feel empowered, and their capacity for inquiry, compromise, and reflection will be enhanced by their college educations. 2. The New York Times: "Eleanor Roosevelt's Love Life, as Fodder for Fiction" "[Amy] Bloom’s [’75] lyrical novel, laced with her characteristic wit and wisdom, celebrates love in its fiery and…