Introduction: Elyse Collat

Aloha! I’m Elyse Collat, an AU Kogod junior originally from Honolulu, Hawaii. I’m studying Business, Language, Culture with Spanish as my language and I’m also working towards a minor in Environmental Science. Academically and professionally I am interested in learning about the world around—I love microfinance, agriculture, healthcare, sustainable development, among other fields. I enjoy learning major issues facing the world and potential solutions—especially when they are as inspiring and exciting as microfinance, mobile technology, etc. In my free time I enjoy travelling, exploring the outdoors, being active, laughing, eating, photography, and surfing or going the beach.

I’m currently interning at the Grameen Foundation which is an organizational established on the principles of Nobel Peace Laureate Muhammad Yunus and his microfinance bank in Bangladesh. Our mission is to alleviate poverty by connecting the world’s poorest with their potential. We leverage business resources and technological tools to facilitate global change.
Last semester, while I was sitting in my Spanish International Business course abroad, our teacher showed us this clip of Muhammad Yunus discussing social business.

I really loved the video because I myself think social business is a brilliant and “win-win” solution (like microfinance). I shared the video with a like-minded friend who told me about Grameen Bank and the Foundation. After a little online background research I found out that GF had a headquarter in D.C. so I immediately wrote to them to ask about interning. The Grameen Foundation is a fantastic organization that is effectively and innovatively attacking a massive global issue that serves as the root for many other social issues. I’m so excited to be supporting and contributing to GF while learning how they do what they do!
I am apart of the Bankers without Borders team and support their work to match talent with the needs of GF and its partner organizations. I’ve been learning all about their projects and how I can contribute. More on this in my next post!

Cheers ☺