The Social Enterprise Institute challenges its students to not only study impact investing, an emergent field within social entrepreneurship, but to apply the strategy to global poverty in ENTR2210: Social Impact Investing — Connecting Compassion and Capital and ENTR4506: Advanced Topics in Social Entrepreneurship in Developing Countries.
In these classes, our students analyze social enterprises driving innovative solutions to poverty and are able to invest in high-performing organizations through the generosity of our supporters.
For the Ubuntu Fund, see below.
2013 — 2014 Dean Tom Moore Honors Investment Pitch
$15,000 awarded to Aakar Innovations
$5,000 awarded to Empower Generation
$5,000 awarded to Livelyhoods
$5,000 awarded to VisionSpring
Spring 2013 — Nicaragua Capstone Impact Investing
$10,000 awarded to Chinantlan Juice & Fruit Cooperative — Nicaragua
2012 — 2013 Dean Tom Moore Honors Investment Pitch
$ 5,000 awarded to Manna Project International
$5,000 awarded to Micro Credit Limited - Jamaica
Spring 2012 — Nicaragua Capstone Impact Investing
$5,000 awarded to Manna Project International in La Chureca — Nicaragua
2011 — 2012 Dean Tom Moore Honors Investment Pitch
$ 10,000 awarded to One Acre Fund
$5,000 awarded to Njabini Apparel
Social Enterprise Institute founder, Dennis Shaughnessy, established the Ubuntu Fund, which provides seed capital to entrepreneurs and emergency food funds to South African business students. The word “ubuntu” originated from a Bantu term meaning humanity towards others and is loosely translated to “I am because we are”. It is one of the principle philosophies in post-apartheid South Africa where Nobel laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu explained that ubuntu is what held the nation together in finding our common humanity.
The Ubuntu Fund was inspired in part by a student whom Shaughnessy worked with in the South Africa Field Study Program. The student walked 2,000 miles from Rwanda to Cape Town, South Africa to attend college. The student has frequently been homeless and earns food money by offering his services as a nighttime security guard to wealthy South Africans to watch over their cars. For his graduation from SEI’s partner school in Cape Town, the Tertiary School in Business Administration (TSiBA), he rented a suit so not to show the Northeastern students his circumstances. He said to Shaughnessy, “Those are just circumstances; they are not who I am.”
The Ubuntu Fund is sustained by donors to the Social Enterprise Institute.