Could you briefly share you academic and professional background?
I graduated from the University of Kansas in 2012 with B.A.’s in English and International Studies. I moved to Madrid, Spain to teach at a high school for a year before accepting a Fulbright to Turkey. As a Fulbright I taught university students English during their first year at the institution. From there I came to Vanderbilt where I am currently pursuing my M. Ed. in International Education Policy and Management.
What was the path that led you to get involved with the TFC?
While applying to graduate schools I discovered Project Pyramid, so when I arrived I asked how I could get connected to students who were involved. The TFC had just been founded and I discovered it had many opportunities I wanted to pursue. I first got involved with the Hult Prize, then started assisting the communications committee, and took the Project Pyramid course in the Spring. I also took on a project with the Social Enterprise Consulting team.
How was your experience as a TFC fellow this summer? Please share some details regarding the project you were working on.
I had an incredible experience this summer working with a team at the Fairgrounds Nashville. It was a great opportunity for me to apply my interests and skills in an unanticipated way. I was on an interdisciplinary team with two MBAs and a student from the Economic Development program. We worked to develop revenue generation ideas through the lens of social enterprise. It was important to us to consider the surrounding communities and the potential impact that could be made with such a great location. Additionally, as part of the project we pulled together data to display the events and building usage on the grounds. Not only did I learn from putting the project deliverables together, but also from working with the interdisciplinary team really allowed us to think uniquely to put together holistic solutions.
What advice would you give to people who hope to pursue a TFC fellowship?
Take advantage of a fellowship to apply your skills in an unexpected way. It’s the perfect opportunity to dive deep into how a social enterprise lens can lead to innovation and further support an organizations mission. I think its important to recognize that not everyone will enter into social enterprise after they graduate, but a fellowship will provide the experience on how to incorporate social good into any future career.