Summer 2015 marked the fourth year of the Universitas 21 Social Entrepreneurship Corps (SEC) in Guatemala Programme. 13 students from 6 U21 institutions began their 4-week pre-departure introduction in May 2015. They learned about social entrepreneurship and Guatemalan history and culture, through an interactive virtual global classroom platform. Shortly thereafter, on 28 June 2015, the 13 students from around the world convened in rural Guatemalan villages to embark on their in-country experience. Students hailed from National University of Singapore, University of Birmingham, University of Connecticut, University of Hong Kong, University of Melbourne, and University of Queensland. Students worked with SEC field professionals and social entrepreneurs to help cultivate new and nurture existing micro-consignment supported businesses.
The students worked on a diverse set of projects, which included designing a business model for local entrepreneurs to improve in their promotion and awareness campaigns on improve wood burning stoves and high capacity water purification systems and also an implementation model to build strong and long-lasting relationships with schools in rural Guatemala by coordinating and providing different types of services from best practices on water, hygiene and sanitation to vision testing with an new innovative technology. These models aim to build capacity and empower all of our partners in the field by gaining new knowledge and making better informed decisions for themselves, their families and their communities. The students were able also to take action and practically test their theories, redesign where needed, learning from the real world setting.
Click below to see photo highlights from the project.
A video on the experience is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unaJEtH0yq4