In spring of 2012, the Social Entrepreneurs of Grinnell was among five winners of the White House “Champions of Change” competition, which honors college groups that work in innovative ways to improve their communities. Former managing director, Grace Philipp ’12, met President Barack Obama (right), who spoke to the winners about their accomplishments. Grace later sat on a discussion panel with the other finalists, and was featured by the tv show mtvU/MTV ACT.
In June of 2012, we were selected as a regional finalist for the Consumer Bankers Association ‘Banking on Youth’ contest. Through this contest, we received seed capital from Bank of America for our credit-building program. The program, which we hope to launch this year, will provide individuals with loans specifically designed to improve their credit score, opening the door for more financial opportunities.
The Social Entrepreneurs of Grinnell has been mentioned twice by The Chronicle of Higher Education. We were first mentioned in January 2012 in an article about campus microfinance groups. In March 2012 we were highlighted in a piece about the five Campus Champions of Change.
In February 2012, former SEG members Jeff Raderstrong and Mark Root-Wiley were interviewed on Voice of America, along with Vanessa Carter, director of the Campus Microfinance Alliance. The broadcast discussed the growing college microfinance movement and the positive impact that SEG and other organizations make in their local communities.
The Social Entrepreneurs of Grinnell was also featured in the Des Moines Register in April 2012. The article highlighted SEG’s focus on helping people in poverty, and its unique model as a lending organization that works through social capital and positive incentives, instead of high interest rates and legal threats. It also discussed SEG’s recent success in the Campus Champions of Change Challenge.