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HGSE Selects Education Entrepreneurship Summer Fellows

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The Harvard Graduate School of Education has named the 2023 recipients of the Education Entrepreneurship Summer Fellowship. The program, launched in 2013, provides funding to allow students and alumni to work full-time on their entrepreneurial ventures during the summer months.

“This is a diverse and exciting pool of promising projects and, importantly, a dedicated group of leaders who will, as our mission suggests, make a difference through their innovative work in education,” said Professor Monica Higgins. “All of the projects selected demonstrate a clear commitment to addressing issues of inequity in education — whether that be to provide opportunities for immigrant families in the United States, to enhance literacy among our homeless population, or to empower women and girls who have been marginalized in their home country. Some of the solutions proposed involve hands-on training and development whereas others offer innovations that revolve around the use of education technology.”

This year, the fellowship saw a number of applicants from HGSE’s doctoral and master's programs. Project applications were reviewed and judged by a committee of HGSE faculty and administrators based on demonstrated leadership and effectiveness, interest in education entrepreneurship, viability of the entrepreneurial venture, and potential impact of venture.

“Simply engaging in the application process can be hugely beneficial for some of these students as they continue to iterate on their ideas,” said Kevin Boehm, director of student affairs. “For the seven recipients of the fellowship, having the summer to dive deeply into their proposed solutions for solving some of the most pressing issues in education around the world can have a profound impact on the direction of their venture.”

The seven students receiving fellowship awards up to $10,000 for six different projects are:

  • Juliana Kagami, Ed.M.’23, and Luciana Schmidt, Ed.M.’23, for Light the Way, which aims to empower Brazilian immigrants in the United States with the education, resources, and network necessary to achieve upward mobility and realize their full potential. Light the Way strives to provide pathways to higher education and career advancement while fostering a community of support that encourages personal and professional growth.
  • Azwa Nayeem, Ed.M.’23, whose project aims to support students and teachers of Alokito Hridoy School (AHS) to engage community members in the Gorai area of Tangail, Bangladesh, to reduce pollution, especially plastic pollution as well as raising awareness on waste management techniques.
  • Lola Olaore, Ed.M.’23, for bloss.m, a program dedicated to empowering girls and women through education, skills development, and community-building programs in the United Kingdom and other territories worldwide.
  • Agustina Ollivier, Ed.M.’23, whose project aims to empower caregivers to support their children’s literacy development with a theory of change based on the notion that if caregivers use engaging, evidence-based materials to support their child's literacy development, they can significantly enhance their reading skills.
  • Garima Shekhar, Ed.M.’23, for Evolving Being, which helps grade 8-12 students make career choices while selecting universities and courses. 
  • Ed.L.D. student Phoebe Grant-Robinson for Dream Between the Lines, which works at the intersection of homelessness and literacy proficiency to provide books to children in temporary housing situations in order to help foster a love of reading.


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