Student Social Impact Initiatives Panel
In Spring 2021, the Social Responsibility Network hosted an end-of-year panel discussion to showcase student-run social impact initiatives. Meet the panelists below:
First and foremost, co-founders Nina Williams and Ceylan Metin are both passionate EMTs and that is at the core of their project. Freshman year, Nina and Ceylan both took the EMT certification course with GERMS (Georgetown’s on-campus, student-run EMS service). This course gave them invaluable experience learning about healthcare which they are now applying as EMTs with GERMS. However, while they’ve felt so lucky to have had the resources to pursue an EMS education, they realized that this opportunity is not accessible to everyone. The tuitions of this course and of other EMT training courses hinder those who are economically disadvantaged from applying, which in turn leads to low diversity within the EMS workforce. Taking a step back, looking not just within the Georgetown bubble but to the broader EMS community in D.C. and nationwide, they saw that these same trends of inaccessibility are prevalent. In Summer 2020, Ceylan and Nina started their nonprofit organization, EMTomorrow, because they felt that the opportunity to be an EMT should be afforded to anyone who wants to be one, regardless of their financial resources.
About Rem and Company
Shortly after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, founder Camryn Okere felt a call to serve, as she watched her neighborhood’s most well-loved businesses and organizations suffer the negative impacts of the crisis and struggle to obtain the support they needed. In addition to that, she noticed that other young professionals and students found themselves with considerably more free time as well as a heightened urge to give back to their local communities. To meet the needs of these two populations, Rem and Company was founded.
Rem and Company began by offering free consulting services to small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Through industry research and working with clients, Rem and Company has expanded to meet the needs of our clients and grow into an information hub and digital community platform for small businesses.
As small businesses continue to need our support, and students are looking for ways to showcase their skills and apply what they have learned in the classroom, we knew there was a need for a vertical within our initiative for undergraduates. Rem on Campus was founded to be a way for students to develop new personal and professional relationships, engage in unique hands-on learning experiences, but most of all help out during a difficult time.
About Robotics for All
As a 9th grader, founder of Robotics For All Maximilian Goetz worked with second-grade student Antonio while tutoring for Reading Partners, a non-profit which aims to help students who are behind in reading. Antonio told Goetz many stories of how he didn’t have opportunities that are often taken for granted, such as having LEGOs at home. It inspired Goetz to research the issue and he found a startling hole in after-school STEM programs at underserved schools. Understanding the importance of STEM skills, Goetz wanted to make a larger impact in the lives of students like Antonio. Founded in April 2017, Robotics For All offers in-person and online robotics, programming, and engineering courses for K-12 grade students. These courses are offered after school, have 1-2 classes/week, and typically run for 8 weeks. Class offerings include Scratch, Python, TinkerCAD, Snap Circuits, and Arduino.
About The Farmlink Project
We grow enough food to feed every person on Earth—yet 1/3 of that food goes to waste each year while millions of people go to bed hungry. The Farmlink Project is an innovative nonprofit founded in April of 2020 rescuing millions of pounds of fresh produce that would otherwise go to waste in order to feed people in need, support essential workers, and create a more sustainable future. Fighting food insecurity is their mission — repurposing surplus produce is their solution.
About Georgetown Disability Alliance
In the spring of 2019, Kiki Schmalfuss, along with Anna Landre, Andrew Bialek, Julia Winkler, Maya Stevenson, and Kenna Chick, founded the Georgetown Disability Alliance. The Georgetown Disability Alliance is a student-run organization looking to build community, increase education, and enact change on disability issues in the Georgetown area.
Innovo is a consulting organization of socially-minded and compassionate college students who draw on their diverse perspectives to create change with social entrepreneurs and non-profit organizations.
About Sustainable Business Fellows Program
On January 29th, 2021, the MSB Executive Council accepted the Sustainable Business Fellows Program, founded by Scott Kase. He worked with a team of two (Piper Conway and Kathryn Fouss) to launch the program which includes three courses in sustainable business, a capstone experience including an independent research project or a senior thesis, and extracurricular engagement of networking and mentoring opportunities. They are a diverse community of like-minded students sharing a passion for business and sustainability, who want to leverage student opportunities designed for unleashing the power of business to help people and the planet thrive.
About 915 Clothes for Relief
As a member of the El Paso community, Mariana grew up watching community members care for each other. When the pandemic started, she knew she needed to help somehow. As a teenage girl with lots of unused clothing, she decided to sell her own clothing through social media and recruit others to do the same in order to donate all profits to their struggling food bank, and 915 Clothes for Relief was born. 915 Clothes for Relief’s mission is to bridge food stability in the El Paso area during COVID-19 through sustainable and community efforts.
About Rose From the Concrete
Rose From the Concrete (RFC) aims to respond to this seemingly loveless society with (1) mentorship and (2) investments from the community in the forms of funding opportunities and services for those who may need it. In the spirit of the mutual aid funds, they operate under the notion that our community is lacking severely in regard to our most fundamental needs (esteem, mental wellness, education, housing security, etc.) but that we have the power and the resources among us to fill this gap if we act collectively. Founder Shanniah Wright states that “RFC was founded because we believe that the white-supremacist, capitalist patriarchy that we inhabit has harmful impacts on our communities, especially our youth, in two specific ways: 1) by indoctrinating us all to adapt mindsets of anti-blackness, inferiority, and hyper-productivity that hinder one’s ability to have sound mental health and 2) by limiting our financial and material resources thus impeding on the financial and physiological security that is essential to one’s growth and self-actualization, according to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.”
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About Victory Scholarship
Young women in Batey Central, Dominican Republic often dream timidly, seeing opportunities for a new life as unattainable and tend to slip into the cultural norm of stagnancy. Their futures are typically marked with instability: having many children with various absent fathers, selling bread or produce to sustain them all. Most are the children of Haitian immigrants who are usually denied Dominican citizenship, health care, and public education. Beaming with inner potential, these ladies often need strong encouragement and financial support to change the trajectory of their lives.
The Victory Scholarship, founded by Alexandra Harakas, seeks to aid young women in their valiant pursuit of a different life through providing for their college tuition. Accepted students also benefit from regular mentor-meetings with local professionals and virtual cultural exchange with an American counterpart. They have access to a local computer and internet center through the program. Upon completing their degree, they have job offers in their respective fields at Children of Hope, an affiliated non-profit local elementary school. There are currently 5 women who are completing their second semester of college bringing them one step closer to opportunities they dared to dream of.