I feel that I was not just working in communities, but I was a part of them, and I think that’s a priceless experience. The connections I was able to make and the impact I was able to physically see made this one of the best experiences of my life.

- Madison S., University of Wisconsin, Dominican Republic

Why Choose Social Entrepreneur Corps?

Start by asking yourself four basic questions:

  • Do I want to immerse myself in a dynamic culture, living and working alongside social innovation leaders?
  • Do I want to learn or enhance my Spanish in a real world setting through engagement with families, organizations and community members?
  • Do I want to work as a social entrepreneurship consultant and gain the knowledge and skills necessary to become empowered as a social innovation leader myself?
  • Do I want to enhance my team building and leadership skills through core values focused work in a challenging developing country environment?

If you’re already nodding your head “yes” to these four questions, then Social Entrepreneur Corps might be a good fit for you.

Join a World-Class Team of Social Innovation Leaders

We combine strong relationships with partners, universities, participants and communities to form a dynamic network of social innovation leaders. Here are just a few examples:

  • We have consulted for organizations such as USAID, VisionSpring, Soros Foundation, Inter-American Development Bank, IFC and Water For People.
  • We work with universities such as Duke University, University of Maryland, University of Connecticut, Stanford University and Northwestern University.
  • We also partner with innovative companies, including Warby Parker and Deloitte, to multiply the impact of our work.

So, out of all of the options you can choose, why choose Social Entrepreneur Corps? Don’t take it from us. Read below what our partners, community members and participants say about Social Entrepreneur Corps. But first, let us outline what we believe are 10 important reasons why Social Entrepreneur Corps has become a global leader in this field.

Out of all participants surveyed over the past 10 years, more than 9 out of 10 would recommend Social Entrepreneur Corps to a friend.
We hope that you will join our team of social innovation leaders. If you’re ready to get started, visit the apply now page.

10 Reasons Why Participants Choose Social Entrepreneur Corps

Safety is our top priority. We draw on deep knowledge and years of experience to make sure that programs are designed and implemented safely. Our team maintains contact with the US State Department and Peace Corps to stay up-to-date on potential threats.
We strive to integrate our core values into all aspects of our work. We are empathetic, inclusive, trusting, client outcomes focused, collaborative, dignified, international, innovative, practical, accountable, endurable and catalytic. We work everyday to empower those around us to do great work with these 12 core values at the heart of our efforts.
We want your work to mean something. It should be useful and have a positive and tangible impact on the communities we serve. You may be asked to research and test the feasibility of an innovation in the field. Or we may need you to figure out how to scale a successful pilot project to see if it works elsewhere. In all cases, we make sure that the work we ask of you is necessary, valuable and sustainable.
If you want to be an effective member of our team, you need to learn empathy. And the quickest way to get there is by directly experiencing the local culture. Most of our program participants live with local homestay families, gaining a unique window onto the culture and society.
The Social Entrepreneur Corps team offers a truly unique skill-set that combines first rate analytical, strategic and project management skills with years of successful on-the-ground experience. You will not find any team that brings a greater level of passion or higher degree of professionalism to their work.
Before you arrive, we will brief you on the projects you will carry out. For some programs, you will even take intensive Spanish classes and an integrated course on social entrepreneurship to help you prepare. After arrival, our foundation building orientation gets you ready to do work in the field. And throughout the course of the program, we will reinforce lessons learned with real-world examples from your work in the field.
We design projects with the end in mind. Social Entrepreneur Corps programs are integrated into year-round, ongoing operations that work to achieve long-term, strategic desired outcomes. We expect participants to contribute towards achieving those goals.
You may periodically find yourself outside your comfort zone. But we will prepare you and support you as you adjust to life in a new culture. At the same time, we expect you to provide those fresh and constructive ideas that are so important to keeping an organization innovative and strong.
You will make lasting connections with the people you meet on these programs. Many participants say that the best part of their experience was getting to know and learn from their homestay families. And you will forge a close bond with others in your group, who all undergo the same challenges and work toward shared goals.
If you want to stay engaged with our work after your program, we are happy to have you. You can get involved with the Social Entrepreneur Corps Network, which links hundreds of participants, partners and clients.

What do partners, community members and participants say about us?

Strategic Partners

Social Entrepreneur Corps is one of those rare experiences that give you leadership, entrepreneurship and international development opportunities all into one. There are a lot of programs out there where you can be a casual observer, but here you go down and get the training that you need to work on real international development projects that are having an impact every day.

- Neil Blumenthal, Co-Founder, Warby Parker

The On-the-Ground experience was truly incredible! Another amazing aspect of the experience was having the opportunity to get to know the SEC representatives that were with us. Their passion for empowering people in the local community to become leaders and entrepreneurs was truly contagious. They were all so knowledgeable and helpful, and it was such a pleasure to be able to work side-by-side with them.

- Deloitte Human Capital Consulting

College and University Partners
Our relationship with Social Entrepreneur Corps is now nearly five years old, and we value it very much. Our belief in DukeEngage is that student transformation comes when they are fully immersed in an issue and community. The Social Entrepreneur Corps model achieves this as well as any program I know. Through intensive language instruction, homestays and student involvement in theMicroConsignment Model, their programs have had a huge impact on our students and the communities they serve.

- Eric Mlyn, Ph.D., Executive Director, DukeEngage, Duke University

At the Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Miami University we research and study a broad scope of social entrepreneurship models. The combined impact that the MicroConsignment Model and Social Entrepreneur Corps create is a true rarity. Rarely do we come across such elegant models for alleviating poverty that are both highly-scalable and empower everyone involved in such a high quality manner.

- Brett Smith, Ph.D., Founder and Director, Center for Social Entrepreneurship, Miami University

Some business ideas are so straightforward and make so much sense that you wonder, “Why didn’t I think of that?”This is definitely the case with the MicroConsignment Model. When our students heard Greg Van Kirk present the model, it made perfect sense to them;the idea in itself was entrepreneurial and encouraged entrepreneurial activity in rural communities. The model provides the training and tools for micro-entrepreneurs to sustain their businesses, as well as purchasing power, which can then be used to spur economicdevelopment in their own communities. Our students keep mentioning the model because it just makes sense.

- Melissa A. Paulsen, Social Entrepreneurship Program, University of Notre Dame

Community Partners

There are few people in this world who understand and care for the “special needs” students and those with disabilities that we work with here. The Social Entrepreneur Corps team understands that we are all humans, and that we all deserve to live life with hope. Thank you for giving us, and our students, hope.

– Margarita G., Teacher, Special Education School, Quiche, Guatemala

The training will help us. It was a very nice experience, not only for me, but for the group as a whole. Everyone came back very pleased with the training.

– Dona Amanda Pérez, Group Leader, Jippi Jappa, Boaco, Nicaragua

I enjoyed very much working with the Social Entrepreneur Corps volunteers and I felt very touched by the fact that students from different parts of the world would want to give their time and energy to come to our country and support us in the work we’re doing here.

– Rosa C., Entrepreneur, Soluciones Comunitarias, Guaranda, Ecuador


Social Entrepreneur Corps Participants
Through the motivation of our leaders and the spirit and energy of the Guatemalans I had the pleasure to meet, I was filled with a sense of empowerment and passion that I know will continue to play a role in the decisions that I make for my career and future.

- Kristina C., University of California at Berkeley, Guatemala

The best part of it all is that even though I’m no longer in Ecuador, I know that the work I did there made a lasting impact and is still being put into use.

– Sarah W., University of North Carolina, Ecuador

I really liked the structure of Social Entrepreneur Corps that allows interns to work independently—something that truly made me feel like a part of the team. I cannot thank Social Entrepreneur Corps enough for all of their help, guidance and making this summer an experience I’ll never forget.

– Matthew O., Duke University, Nicaragua

What’s new in 2016

Columbia Business School Certificate in Social Entrepreneurship

  • Social Entrepreneur Corps has partnered with Columbia Business School’s Venture for All® initiative to offer participants the opportunity to earn a certificate from CBS titled “Social Entrepreneurship: Changemaking for Change Leaders”.
  • This will include online pre-departure and field-based social entrepreneurship education taught by World Economic Forum “Social Entrepreneur of the Year” and Ashoka Fellow Greg Van Kirk and Professor Jack McGourty of Columbia Business School.
  • The certificate is available to all 3, 4, or 8 week program participants.

Co-founder Greg Van Kirk leads a session with consultants from Deloitte in Guatemala, 2014.