Catherine Harrison, Clinton Global Initiative University

picWhen Catherine first arrived at UT in 2006, she had no clue what she wanted to do with her life and decided it best to take a few gap years. Before she knew it, she had spent four years au pairing in the Netherlands, volunteering in Cambodia, living in the mountains of India, and travelling in between. These journeys ignited her passion for universal education, and today, she is back at UT incorporating her global travel into her studies and campus involvements. Currently, Catherine serves as Vice President of She’s the First* (UTK) and advocates to sponsor girls’ educations in developing countries. As a selected participant of the 2014 Clinton Global Initiative University Conference and part of She’s the First’s Run the World campaign, she has committed to run her first half-marathon this fall and raise enough money to send a girl in Nepal to the Kopila Valley Children’s school for one year with each mile she runs. Catherine will run 13 miles; and that means 13 miles, and 13 girls afforded an education. To read more about She’s the First, visit: http://www.shesthefirst.org/.

Catherine was one of a number of UT students who participated in this year’s Clinton Global Initiative University. Others included members of UT’s Economics Club who participated in the ‘Up to Us’ competition this year, sponsored by Net Impact, Clinton Global Initiative University, and the Peter G. Peterson Foundation. Their 5-week campaign included Fort Box, a budget simulation, a panel on the the debt, two videos, social media outreach and a petition with Belmont. After being judged by Chelsea Clinton and George Stephanopoulos, the team was notified of winning ‘Participant Engagement’ funding and was flown to CGIU over spring break. The UT team included Kayla McMurry, Sam Rule, Jessica TenBroeck, Carly Frensley, and Andrew Valk. Brianna Rader, Jacob Clark, Summer Awad, and Anagha Uphal also participated in CGIU, and received support and recognition for their Social Commitments and individual project proposals.

For more information on the Clinton Global Initiative University and its support of social entrepreneurship, visit: http://www.cgiu.org/. For support and guidance in applying for funding to participate in CGIU, contact the ONSF at onsf@utk.edu.