Facultad Economía y Negocios: The social value of education

JAMIE OLHABERRY AGUILAR //
Facultad economía y negocios, Universidad de Chile //
Santiago //
July 13th 2017 //

I met Jamie in the University of Chile, his work is very connected to the network of educational institutions that are coming together in Chile to look at their responsibility to solve/tackle the social challenges in the country.

Students learn about what is really happening in their country, and they develop the skills to work in a social context in the future”

He works with students from the economics and business faculty. There are 5 faculties in the university. His work is about making practical social change, they link with exisiting foundations, social organisations, and social businesses, to see how the students can enhance the social value of their work. The programme has been running since 2013 and so far it has involved 1400 students and 140 organisations. There are a lot of organisations eager to be part of this programme, and Jamie is keen to see the model replicated across the Chilean educational system.

“This is the students first real practical experience of working, putting their theory into the real world”

They have done projects so far with the Chilean prison system, in child health, with drug addiction, and food inequality. They choose issues and partners that reflect the needs of the country. The students currently work with these issues during a semester, so between 2-3 months, and Jamie’s focus at the moment is on how to increase this time, and also help the students continue working in these fields after they graduate.

“This is their first experience of freedom outside of the academic system”

He uses the term ‘aprendizaje más servicio’, learning as well as providing a service.

The students academic work during these projects include: markets and market analysis, social business models, costs and business plans, and evaluation of impact.

“This is about the integration of our students skills into real social and practical problems”

Jamie is keen to expand the network around this work, and build more links internationally with people who bring real social innovation work into universities.

 

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