Pitzer College Alumnus Richard McKinney Awarded Social Innovation Fellowship


Claremont, Calif. (January 28, 2013) — Pitzer College alumnus Richard McKinney ’10 won a StartingBloc Fellowship to the New York-based Institute for Social Innovation. The StartingBloc Fellowship program prepares young people committed to social and environmental justice to become global leaders who can address some of today’s most urgent issues.

Through the Institute for Social Innovation, StartingBloc fellows engage in an intensive five-day training program that includes sessions led by professors, activists, government officials and other experts on social entrepreneurship, cross-sector partnerships and sustainability. StartingBloc also partners with graduate programs, such as the Yale University School of Management, to provide further educational opportunities to fellows.

McKinney will join the network of 1,800 StartingBloc fellows from more than 55 countries who collaborate on world-wide social and environmental projects.

“I am incredibly grateful and excited for this opportunity,” McKinney said. “Through StartingBloc’s education program and extensive network of like-minded professionals, I can hone the skills I’ll need to pursue my interest in, and passion for, advancing sustainability-driven practices across private and public sectors.”

At the Institute for Social Innovation this summer, McKinney will share with other StartingBloc fellows the lessons he has learned from his own experience creating innovative, sustainability initiatives abroad.

As a Peace Corps volunteer in Jordan from 2010-12, McKinney worked at an orphanage where he developed USAID-funded water and energy efficiency projects that decreased annual water use by 31 percent and energy consumption by 44 percent. He also led a series of health and education projects for a local NGO that served 4,000 underprivileged youth.

At Pitzer, McKinney was a member of the Student Senate, served on the Faculty Executive Committee and led the Claremont Rugby team that won the Division II National Championship in 2010. He triple-majored in philosophy, political studies and psychology.




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