Using Business As a Force for Change

SILO Embraces Social Entrepreneurship 

By Francesca De Nes

Staff Writer

The Students Impact Leaders Organization (SILO), a student-led initiative within the Social Impact Lab, focuses on learning how to use business as a force for good. 

SILO began one year ago with roughly 10 students and has since grown to 55 members this year. The students in the group are invited to begin their own projects and movements, leveraging their unique abilities.  

“Students are encouraged to change the world however they think it can be done best,” said Jerry Hildebrand, director of the Social Impact Lab. “It is an action-oriented organization, and we are looking for change-makers who are passionate about making a difference.” 

Within the program, there are also workshops available where students can learn the tools of the trade. Hildebrand also invites numerous speakers throughout the year to share their stories with the students. 

“We bring in all different speakers, oftentimes it is students [alumni] that have started their own organizations,” said Hildebrand. “They come in and talk about what they did, the kind of challenges they faced and how they managed for their organization to work.” 

Building off the SILO initiative, there are many events coming up across the organization, including the Ambassador Corps. Via that aspect of the program, 14 students will journey abroad during the summer to various developing countries, including Belize, Colombia and Costa Rica. 

Hildebrand and his team also created the Civic Impact Corps, yet another opportunity that pairs well with SILO. In it, students will work with non-profit organizations in the Boca area during the summer. 

“We are changing students’ lives by getting them out of their comfort zones,” said Hildebrand. “They are understanding what it is like to be a change maker and to try out their ideas locally and globally.”

Hildebrand and SILO look to create a difference both locally and globally.  

For more information about SILO, students are welcome to attend any of its Think Tank meetings on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. in their aforementioned new location – on the third floor of the Christine E. Lynn University Center.

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