Recently, a group of six students represented Oglethorpe University at the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation Service and Social Entrepreneurship Retreat in Hendersonville, NC. Brian Cornelius ’15, Shea Pitre ’15, Corey Ray ’14, Vanessa Garcia ’15, Ashley Causey ’14, and Samuel Lyon ’15 all took the opportunity during the three-day retreat to learn more about social entrepreneurship and its importance and power for change. Together with students from colleges on the east coast, and from the South and the Appalachian mountain area, they shared ideas about how they want to change their own communities and the world.
The weekend featured presentations by established social entrepreneurs (many of whom were undergraduates as well), while the students were able to develop their own ideas at the same time. Participants also heard from Perry Wilson, founder and president of If I Had a Hammer, as well as Oglethorpe’s own Tamara Nash, executive director of the Center for Civic Engagement. Interacting with such exemplary people who have made their dreams a reality was enough to get even the most reluctant participant excited.
“The experience and skills that I gained while at the conference are things that I will never forget,” said Brian Cornelius. “It helped me to better understand social change, and how even in college, if we try, we can make the world a better place by simply just having an idea.”
Chi Phi Fraternity President and CCE Ambassador Corey Ray was intrigued by the “changing trend of community service.”
At the end of the weekend, the students were given the opportunity to develop our own ideas and receive direct feedback from the professionals that they had recently heard from. The Oglethorpe students developed business models and presented these ideas at the conference.
Interested in hearing about their ideas and learning more about the Sullivan Foundation? Please join these six students for a panel presentation and discussion on Tuesday, April 3 at 12:30 pm in the Center for Civic Engagement, located in the Emerson Student Center at Oglethorpe.
Thank you to these six students, who contributed to the content of this article.