Tag Archive for Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship

Patricelli Center Receives Challenge Grant from Propel to Complete Endowment

Propel Capital, a philanthropic and impact investing fund that supports innovative strategies to deploy capital for social impact, has announced a challenge grant to Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship (PCSE). Every dollar raised in gifts or pledges to the PCSE endowment by June 2017 will be matched 1:1 by Propel, up to $700,000 which will fully endow the Center.

Co-founded by Jeremy Mindich ’87 and Sarah Williams ’88, Propel Capital provides grants and investments to nonprofits and social enterprises early or at critical junctures in their development. Mindich and Williams were part of a small group of Wesleyan alumni who came together in 2009, along with Bob Patricelli, and conceived of the Center. In 2011, Propel Capital provided seed funding to launch the Center’s programming. Williams co-chairs the Advisory Board and Mindich serves as a seed grant judge and advisor to the Center.

“One of the hallmarks of a Wesleyan education is the ability to challenge commonly held assumptions and beliefs and to chart new ways of doing things,” Mindich said. “The Center creates a pipeline of talented students skilled in this kind of thinking and then connects them to the amazing alumni network of Wesleyan social entrepreneurs.“

The Patricelli Center provides students with the training, experience, and connections to accelerate their growth as social entrepreneurs. “Wesleyan students combine ingenuity, drive, and passion for impact,” Williams said. “We are proud of the work the Center has done to date and excited about its future as a critical Wesleyan institution.”

The Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship provides workshops and a class, seed funding to explore new ideas, opportunities and training to serve on boards of local nonprofits, business mentors, summer internship financing, connections to and between alumni in related fields, and helps incubate new enterprises on campus. This year, the Center organized and hosted the first Social Impact Summit, a conference attended by 120 people that featured many enterprises launched by Wesleyan alumni.

In addition to its work around the world, Propel Capital is a sustaining supporter of key projects across Wesleyan, including the PCSE, the Center for Prison Education, and the Kevin Sanborn ’87 Scholarship and Summer Experience Grants.

To learn more about the Patricelli Center, visit www.wesleyan.edu/patricelli. For information about making a gift or pledge, contact Steve Kirsche at skirsche @ wesleyan.edu. View past News @ Wesleyan stories on the Patricelli Center here.

Patricelli Center to Host Social Impact Summit, Nov. 13-14

URAL15241_ShashaSummitPostcard_0811_smj-1On Nov. 13-14 Wesleyan will host the inaugural Social Impact Summit, a gathering of alumni and parents who are passionately working for social change on a local, national and global scale. The summit is underwritten by James Shasha ’50, P’82, and organized by the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship, the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life, and the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations.

Many alumni joke about the “Wesleyan Film Mafia” but less well-known is the “Wesleyan Social Impact Mafia,” a large web of alumni engaged in social impact work.

Patricelli Center Launches Crowdfunding Campaign

The Patricelli Center, opened in 2011, is working to close a funding gap. At the May 2011 ribbon cutting for the center, from left to right, are Jessica Posner Odede '09, Kennedy Odede '12, Board of Trustees Chair Joshua Boger '73, P '06, P '09, Bob Patricelli '61, P '88, P'90, Margaret Patricelli  P '88, P'90, and Alison Patricelli '90.  (Photo by Olivia Drake.)

The Patricelli Center, opened in 2011, is working to close a funding gap. At the May 2011 ribbon cutting for the center, from left to right, are Jessica Posner Odede ’09, Kennedy Odede ’12, Board of Trustees Chair Joshua Boger ’73, P ’06, P ’09, Bob Patricelli ’61, P ’88, P’90, Margaret Patricelli  P ’88, P’90, and Alison Patricelli ’90. (Photo by Olivia Drake)

Since 2011, Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship (PCSE) has supported students who want to change the world by providing training, grants, advising, networking and an incubator workspace. PCSE has a funding gap for 2015-16, and is seeking to raise money through a crowdfunding campaign.

The crowdfunding campaign, the first run by the Patricelli Center, launched on Aug. 17 on the website Indiegogo and closes on Sept. 26. Donors can choose from a variety of different perks, depending on their contribution level, including a ticket to Wesleyan’s Social Impact Summit (Nov. 13-14), a mentoring session with a Wesleyan alumnus/a, lunch at the Patricelli Center, or a named grant.

About two-thirds of the Patricelli Center’s operating costs are currently supported by an endowment fund, created in 2011 by a founding gift from the Robert ’61 and Margaret Patricelli Family Foundation, and built up over four years with gifts from Propel Capital and several alumni and parent donors. Until the Center is fully endowed and financially self-sustaining, it needs to raise approximately $50,000 annually.

Claudia Kahindi '18, left, and Olayinka Laval '15, right, at work in the Patricelli Center. The two used a Davis Projects for Peace grant to launch KIU, an English education program, in Kahindi's home area of coastal Kenya this summer. (Photo by Cynthia Rockwell.)

Claudia Kahindi ’18, left, and Olayinka Laval ’15, right, at work in the Patricelli Center. The two used a Davis Projects for Peace grant to launch KIU, an English education program, in Kahindi’s home area of coastal Kenya this summer. (Photo by Cynthia Rockwell)

The Patricelli Center’s $140,000 yearly budget covers personnel; seed grants, internship grants and enrichment grants for students; training, workshops and office operations.

“The Patricelli Center teaches practical skills for students seeking to have social impact. Raising money – in particular crowdfunding – is one of those skills, so it seemed fitting that we practice what we preach and launch a campaign of our own,” said PCSE Director Makaela Kingsley. “We hope this project will not only help close our urgent funding gap for 2015-2016, but also increase awareness about the Center overall. Obviously I’m biased, but I think social impact and entrepreneurship is a perfect fit for Wesleyan – and a great cause to support.”

Nearly 10 percent of Wesleyan students take advantage of PCSE’s services, and demand has been steadily growing. In 2014-15, PCSE held 37 workshops, trainings, and networking events; awarded 24 grants to 39 applicants; provided 277 advising sessions and dozens of professional connections to 121 students and alumni; and added 38 alumni volunteers to its growing network.

Learn more at the Patricelli Center’s website, or its Indiegogo page.

Faculty, Students Discuss Risk at Symposium

On May 2, the Wesleyan Symposium on Risk brought together faculty and students for an interdisciplinary discussion of risk. The event was sponsored by American Studies, the Center for the Humanities, the College of Letters, Feminist, Gender and Sexuality Studies, the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship, the Neuroscience and Behavior Program, the Science in Society Program, and the Huffington Foundation Professor of Economics and Environmental Studies support funds. (Photos by Hannah Norman ’16)

Brian Stewart, professor of physics, professor of environmental studies, spoke on "The Metastasis of Risk."

Brian Stewart, professor of physics, professor of environmental studies, spoke on “The Metastasis of Risk.”

PCSE Awards Seed Grants to Student-Led Ventures

The Wesleyan Doula Project is a student-run, volunteer collective that improves access to quality women’s health care by training students and non-students to work in local clinics, and by directing outreach locally, state-wide, and nationally. Pictured from left are the co-founders, Hannah Sokoloff-Rubin '16, Julia Vermeulen '15 and Zandy Stovicek '17.

The Wesleyan Doula Project, a seed grant winner, is a student-run, volunteer collective that improves access to quality women’s health care by training students and non-students to work in local clinics, and by directing outreach locally, state-wide, and nationally. Pictured from left are the co-founders, Hannah Sokoloff-Rubin ’16, Julia Vermeulen ’15 and Zandy Stovicek ’17.

Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship announced the winners of the 2015 PCSE Seed Grant Challenge. 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.

Recipients were selected from a strong pool of finalists who submitted written business plans and pitched to a panel of expert judges comprised of alumni, students, faculty and staff. Applicants were assessed on their project design, leadership qualities and potential for social impact.

The 2015 Seed Grant recipients are:

Alumni Speak on Careers for the Common Good

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On Nov. 19, four Wesleyan alumni spoke to students about their post-Wesleyan journeys in a panel discussion on “Careers for the Common Good.” The event was moderated by Lily Herman ’16, pictured at left. Panelists included, from left, Gregg Croteau ’93, Christian Philemon ’97, Katie Nihill ’10 and Matt Lesser ’10.

Youth, Business, Healthcare Discussed at Africa Innovation Summit

Wesleyan's African Students Association hosted an Africa Innovation Summit Nov. 7 in Daniel Family Commons.

Wesleyan’s African Students Association hosted an Africa Innovation Summit Nov. 7 in Daniel Family Commons.

Hirut Mcleod ’00, a management consultant at The World Bank, delivered the keynote address. Mcleod has experience coaching leaders at all levels in Africam Asian and the Balkan region. She served as elected alumna trustee of the Wesleyan Board of Trustees from 2012-2014.

Hirut Mcleod ’00, a management consultant at The World Bank, delivered the keynote address. Mcleod has experience coaching leaders at all levels in Africam Asian and the Balkan region. She served as elected alumna trustee of the Wesleyan Board of Trustees from 2012-2014.

Patricelli Seed Grant Winners Share Project Progress

Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grant recipients Oladoyin Oladapo '14 and Kwaku Akoi ’14 are spending the summer in New York running a social venture called JooMah, a web and SMS platform that helps African employers find talent and connects job seekers with opportunities. The recent alumni, and other members of the JooMah team have been conducting market research, building connections, honing their own business-related skills and are currently launching their service in Ghana. Oladapo '14 is JooMah's chief operations officer and Akoi is the chief executive officer.

Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grant recipients Oladoyin Oladapo ’14 and Kwaku Akoi ’14 are spending the summer in New York running a social venture called JooMah, a web and SMS platform that helps African employers find talent and connects job seekers with opportunities. The recent alumni, and other members of the JooMah team have been conducting market research, building connections, honing their own business-related skills and are currently launching their service in Ghana. Oladapo ’14 is JooMah’s chief operations officer and Akoi is the chief executive officer.

In March, the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship awarded three student-led social ventures with a Seed Grant. Student representatives from each group received $5,000 in unrestricted startup funds as well as trainings, advising, mentoring, incubator workspace, and other resources from the Patricelli Center.

This summer, the students are putting their grants to good use.

Students Receive Patricelli Center Grants, Priebatsch Summer Internship

This month, five Wesleyan students received Summer Experience Grants, supported by the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship. The honor comes with a $4,000 stipend to supplement costs associated with a summer internship experience.

The grants are available for Wesleyan sophomores and juniors currently receiving need-based financial aid who plan to do socially innovative or socially responsible work during summer break.

The recipients include Theodora Messalas ’15, Dara Mysliwiec ’16, Keren Reichler ’16, Geneva Jonathan ’15 and Jared Geilich ’15. In addition, film major Aaron Kalischer-Coggins ’15 received a Priebatsch Internship Grant. All grantees report on their experiences on the Patricelli Center’s ENGAGE blog.

Theodora Messalas

Theodora Messalas ’15

Sociology major Theodora Messalas is working with a food pantry, soup kitchen and women’s homeless shelter called Crossroads Community Services in New York City, exploring ways to implement successful social services in which the needs and preferences of the end-users are paramount.

“I am interested in finding out exactly how Crossroads is run in the hopes of one day spearheading my own similar organization,” Messalas said. “I want to see firsthand how they have translated the desire to provide food and shelter to underserved New Yorkers into a running operation that can actually get these services to people. I want to see all their successes, and I want to get to know the roadblocks that they meet.”

Biology and earth and environmental studies major Dara Mysliwiec is addressing food sovereignty in Lamas, Peru, using sustainable – and previously lost – indigenous farming techniques

Patricelli Center Awards 3 Student-Led Social Ventures

BUKO founder Joaquin Benares '15 explains BUKO components to teachers in the Philippines.

BUKO founder Joaquin Benares ’15 explains BUKO components to teachers in the Philippines. Benares recently received a Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grant.

Three student-led social ventures are the winners of the 2014 Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grant Competition. Student representatives from each group will each receive $5,000 in unrestricted startup funds as well as trainings, advising, mentoring, incubator workspace, and other resources from the Patricelli Center.

Recipients were selected from a strong pool of finalists who submitted written business plans and pitched to a panel of expert judges comprised of alumni, students, faculty, and staff. Applicants were assessed on their project design, leadership qualities and potential for social impact.

”We are thrilled to support the early development of these three breakthrough projects, led by extraordinary emerging social entrepreneurs,” said PCSE co-chair Lara Galinsky ’96. “Their ideas will address education in the Philippines, job access in Africa, and environmental sustainability in the United States. [The projects] have considerable promise and potential for impact.”

BUKO-300x99The 2014 PCSE Seed Grant finalists are:

Patricelli Center’s Seed Grant Finalists Announced; Final Pitch Feb. 28

Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship announced the finalists for its 2014 PCSE Seed Grant Competition.

These $5,000 awards are intended to fund the launch or early stage growth of a Wesleyan-connected social enterprise, project, program or venture. Last year’s winners used the seed funding to launch a grant-funded community supported agriculture effort in Middletown, work with incarcerated youth in Chicago, advocate for farmers’ working conditions in Bali, and scale up the MINDS Foundation and Maji Safi Group, two Wesleyan-borne social enterprises.

This year’s finalists will pitch their projects at a public event from noon to 1 p.m. Feb. 28 in Exley Science Center Room 121. All members of the Wesleyan community are invited to attend.

BUKO-300x99The 2014 PCSE Seed Grant finalists are:

BOUNDLESS UPDATED KNOWLEDGE OFFLINE by Joaquin Benares ’15.
Boundless Updated Knowledge Offline (BUKO) aims to bring the video lectures, e-textbooks, and other online education tools to those who need them most.

FILMMAKERS TO CHANGEMAKERS by Victor Goh Jin Chieh ’16, Mia Deng ’17, Jacob Sussman ’17 and Hans How ’17.
Social enterprises maximize their social impact by publicizing their cause to increase awareness and attract donations and volunteers. Video marketing is a powerful tool that entrepreneurs, activists, and institutions should utilize; however, video production services are highly cost-prohibitive. We are a student-run film production company that seeks to address this problem by matching student filmmakers with clients that want to use video in their cause marketing strategy at an affordable rate.

Patricelli Center Awards 22 Grants, Offers 36 Events in 2012-13

Two years after its founding in May 2011, Wesleyan University’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship (PCSE) is becoming a hub of activity by supporting students and alumni interested in creating and sustaining programs, businesses, and organizations that advance the public good.

During the 2012-13 academic year, the PCSE offered 36 events featuring 30 alumni and five students, awarded 22 grants to 44 applicants, provided bi-weekly student counseling hours to dozens of  undergraduates, and added more than 30 alumni volunteers to its growing network.

2012/2013 highlights include:

  • Five $5,000 Seed Grants were awarded to individual students or student teams with plans for a new venture or a scaling up of an existing enterprise.
    • Evan Okun ’13 will launch a new program with Circles and Ciphers, a leadership development organization in Chicago that fuses restorative justice practices with hip-hop culture to empower and support predominantly young African-American and Latino males.
    • Hailey Sowden ’15 and Kate Enright ’15 will launch The Middletown Food Project, a subsidized, low-cost, community-supported agriculture (CSA) program for low-income families in Middletown, Connecticut.