Coursework at D-Lab and Harvard
In spring 2014 I participated in D-Lab: Education, an MIT course focused on exploring education through the lens of international development through research, experiential learning, and the development of collaborative projects with partners from across the globe. Additionally, I took a graduate research class at Harvard focused on education in the Global South where I performed extensive research the on the Ugandan Universal Primary Education (UPE) initiative and educational-investment strategies related to that system and its gendered dynamics.
My research with both classes revealed that even with the introduction UPE system, it was not necessarily translating into practical access and employment opportunities for many young people in Uganda.
It was through that research that I became very interested in exploring social entrepreneurship as a platform of empowerment and for teaching useful skills for life. I proposed that our team develop social entrepreneurship curriculum directed toward primary students, which we decided to adopt as a class project.
The Kasiisi Project, Uganda
in July, I traveled to Uganda to implement this project in Uganda. I volunteered my time with Kasiisi Project, which works with a network of over 14 government (public) primary schools throughout the Kibale National Park, and the Kasiisi Primary School. I traveled to Uganda on behalf of my team to implement this project in the Kasiisi community. There, I collaborated with teachers, local community members, and students to introduce our sustainable social entrepreneurship curriculum in a pilot workshop that culminated in a pitch competition before the entire school.
Additional School Visits
I also visited to meet with educators and students at St. Stephen's Secondary school (universal secondary school) (Jinja), Kitante Primary school (Kampala-Kololo district) (universal primary school) and Beacon East Africa (private primary school focused on project-based and experiential learning and teacher training). I performed research and met with educators and attended teacher trainings, hands-on science workshops and student project demonstrations.
Currently, I am exploring ways to continue growing this project. I am developing more curriculum around financial literacy education, developing a proof of concept paper, applying for fellowships and grants, and exploring issues surrounding this project further academically at school. I am really interested in collaborating with others to see how to help this project continue grow and hope to return to Uganda this winter to work with partners.
This project was supported through the generous support of MIT's D-Lab: Education, Harvard University, my family, and friends.