Mission Matters

Science, Technology, and Society

Going global

Going global
Connected: A family in Madagascar with a ToughStuff solar phone charger — perhaps a company soon to be hosting an SCU Global Fellow. Photo courtesy of ToughStuff.
by Jeff Gire |
A $2 million grant creates a yearlong fellowship program—with students taking part in a global network of socially conscious businesses.

Next summer, four pairs of students will embark on an internship unlike any ever posted at a campus career center. They will travel to locations across the globe to work at budding businesses that provide innovative services to some of the world’s most poverty-stricken areas.

Some students may help provide low-cost solar power chargers for cell phones in rural Africa, saving people a day’s walk to a charging station. Others could end up in Paraguay, India, Kenya, and throughout the United States—perhaps training women in information technology so that they can enter traditionally male-dominated work forces.

  “It is our hope that being a Global Social Benefit Fellow will inspire our most promising student leaders.”

This fellowship, which is slated for the next five years, was made possible by two convergences. First, the decade of work by the Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI) run by SCU’s Center for Science, Technology, and Society; each year the GSBI trains up to 20 entrepreneurs to scale up a social benefit enterprise. Second, a $2 million grant from the Noyce Foundation, headed by former SCU trustee Ann Bowers. She served on the board for 12 years, when the University was led by President Paul Locatelli, S.J. ’60. “We wanted to create an enduring legacy to honor Father Locatelli, who was so passionate to see that the world’s most disadvantaged populations not be abandoned,” she said. “It is our hope that being a Global Social Benefit Fellow will inspire our most promising student leaders from all disciplines to leverage their talents, in ways small or large, for the betterment of all humanity.”

This year eight students will be chosen as Global Social Benefit Fellows through a competitive application process. These students first take a preparatory course on social entrepreneurship in the spring of their junior year, which will also introduce them to the enterprises at which they will intern during summer 2012.

Linda Alepin and Elizabeth Powers said on Feb 3, 2012

Dear Editor of Santa Clara Magazine,
We read with interest your article in the recent Santa Clara Magazine about the Global Social Benefit Fellows program. It is wonderful to see a program with such high impact being added to the opportunities for our undergraduate students.

We would like students, faculty, alums, and donors to know about some other opportunities that the SCU undergraduate community has been extending to our students for many years.

Donovan Fellows are students who receive small stipends to do work on global projects. This program is administered by the Ignatian Center. Students submit their individually motivated project plans for summer internships and are awarded $1,500 to support these efforts. The program is supported by an endowment from the Jesuit community, has been in existence since 2000 and awards 15 fellowships per year.

For the last four years, the Global Fellows program has placed from 15 to 30 undergraduate students for 5 - 7 weeks working in an internship with Non-Governmental organizations in a developing country. Many of these placements are with women leaders who have attended the Women Leaders for the World program here at SCU. Global Fellows was created with the vision and support of the former Dean of the Leavey School of Business, Barry Posner, the current Dean of Leavey, Drew Starbird, and the Dean of the School of Engineering, Godfrey Mungal.

All of the Santa Clara "global citizen" experiences are contributing to creating graduates who are truly leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion.

Linda T. Alepin
Dean's Executive Professor of Entrepreneurship,
Santa Clara University Founding Director, Global Women's Leadership Network

Elizabeth Powers
Director of International Studies, Leavey School of Business
Professor of Practice

Winter 2012

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