Where do you go to school and what are you studying towards?
I am currently a graduate student at the University of Maryland, College Park pursuing both Master of Public Policy (MPP) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) degrees. This fall, I will be entering my third and final year in this dual degree program.
What attracted you to Reinvestment Fund for a summer internship?
I initially learned about CDFIs through an informational interview with an alumnus from the University of Maryland. He thought CDFI’s were a good fit for me given my interests in bringing investments to low-wealth communities that were empowering. While researching CDFIs, I found the Reinvestment Fund and learned that they were going to attend the Net Impact Conference in November 2016. I felt connected to the mission and I was surprised to read about all the work the organization was involved in, especially in the city of Baltimore. I knew I had to intern at Reinvestment Fund when I attended the conference and had the opportunity to meet Pat and Stuart. They shared their experiences at Reinvestment Fund and were willing to answer all my questions about the position. Their excitement about the organization let me know that it would be a good fit for the summer.
What are some of the things you will be working on for Reinvestment Fund during your internship? What do you hope to learn from your internship here?
Since I am interning with the Loan Originations team, I am helping the loan officers with specific underwriting tasks, such as financial spreading, contributing to credit memos, and going on site visits to meet with potential borrowers. What I like about my position is that I can work on loans from different business lines and regions, so I have worked on potential loans for charter schools, early childhood centers, health centers, commercial real estate, and Pay for Success. I hope that by the end of the summer I can understand the components of our term sheets, can identify potential risks to the loans we are considering, and learn real estate “lingo.”
Share something interesting you have learned about Reinvestment Fund or the industry in your time here.
The most interesting thing I learned at Reinvestment Fund is how much the organization is growing and leading in the CDFI industry. Not only is the organization finding ways to invest in specific community development projects, but it is also providing opportunities for other investors to join this work. For example, in the month of May alone Reinvestment Fund made two important announcements: (1) Issued $50 million in impact investment bonds – which were oversubscribed and the first of its kind, and (2) Created a $10 million Pay For Success Fund in partnership with QBE Insurance Group and Living Cities. These two announcements stood out to me because we had a full-staff meeting where the Finance Department explained the process for issuing the bonds to everyone. I really felt like part of the team during that meeting and I learned so much!
Is there anything else that you would like to share that we didn’t ask you?
One cool thing about Reinvestment Fund is that the office layout is open so you have the opportunity to see and interact with everyone in the office. This layout encourages just-in-time problem solving and collaboration. It has also given me an opportunity to get to know people in the office that I do not work with on a regular basis, especially during my daily coffee breaks in the staff kitchen.
College(s) Attended: Swarthmore College (Bachelor of Arts); University of Maryland, College Park (Master of Public Policy and Master of Business Administration- MPP/MBA)