NH International Seminar Series Fall 2012
Van Kirk Inspires Students with Cutting Edge Economic Development Model
Opening the Fall 2012 New Hampshire International Seminar series, Greg Van Kirk, co-founder of Community Enterprise Solutions (CES), demonstrated how his innovative micro-consignment model creates access to life-changing technologies, products and services for isolated villagers by empowering first-time entrepreneurs. Named the “Social Entrepreneur of the Year” by the Schwab Foundation, Van Kirk energized students with his personal story.
Working first in finance, Van Kirk left the profession after a few years to join the Peace Corps. He then worked as an entrepreneur in Guatemala, and eventually became the head of the nonprofit CES, which is active throughout Latin America, Haiti and South Africa.
“…Back in college, I never would have imagined working and doing what I am today,” Van Kirk attested.
Van Kirk also met with faculty and staff on campus to plant the seeds for a partnership that would enable UNH students to research and study with his organization. His speech is available in video.
The NH International Seminar, focusing on Innovations in Sustainable Development, continues with two more compelling events this fall:
- “A Radical Model for Global Food, Farming and Business”
Rob Everts, co-president, Equal Exchange
Wednesday, October 24, MUB Theater II, 4:00-5:15 pm, preceded by Fair Trade Café 2:30-4:00 pm
- “Water Challenges and Opportunities in the City of the Future”
Glen Daigger, president, International Water Association and senior vice president/chief technology officer, CH2M HILL
Thursday, November 8, MUB Theater II, 12:30-2:00 pm