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Students Attend Harvard Social Enterprise Conference

Photo: Elena Petre and Alison SolisFreshmen students Elena Petre and Alison Solis represented the UST Social Entrepreneurship Program at the 13th annual Harvard Social Enterprise Conference in Boston, Mass. in February, one of the world’s premiere social enterprise summits recognized by Forbes, the World Economic Forum and the Clinton Global Initiative.

“Allison and I were selected to go to the conference because this is our first year in the Social Entrepreneurship Program,” said Petre, an International Development major. “Dr. Rogelio Garcia-Contreras, the SEP faculty advisor, believed it would motivate us to become more involved.”

The conference is entirely student-run, jointly hosted by students from the Harvard Business School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. This year, more than 1,500 students from across the country gathered to hear 125 speakers and attend 40 panels and workshops.

“Being a social entrepreneur is more difficult than being a commercial entrepreneur, because the social entrepreneur’s profit is not just monetary,” said Petre. “It was amazing to see so many brilliant and prepared people gathered together who want to dedicate their lives and professions to developing sustainable products and services to help others. It made me feel like I am not alone in wanting to change the world little by little.”

The UST Social Entrepreneurship Program is a student-run service-learning program dedicated to eradicating poverty in third world countries through the allocation of micro credit loans to the impoverished. The members promote principles of freedom, fairness and democracy. For more information about the program, visit

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