Jillian Flavin, MBA/IEP ’18

M-Force Ireland

The MForce Student Consulting Team traveled to Ireland over Spring Break to conduct interviews as part of an ongoing impact project with an Irish NGO. The organization, iCare Housing, is working to ease some of the effects of the Irish housing crisis through a mortgage to rent program. They work with homeowners and banks to buy mortgages that are irreparably in arrears and convert them to state-supported rental properties, allowing people to stay in their homes and banks to resolve their non-performing mortgages. Middlebury Institute professor Constantin Gurdgiev is on the board of the organization and connected the organization to the students.

While in Ireland, we interviewed 13 stakeholders of the organization, including employees, board members, customers, banks, and state housing authorities. By interacting with each group in person, we gained valuable insights into the situation for each stakeholder and the way the organization affects each one. We also had the opportunity to engage in informal conversations with people we met throughout the trip to truly understand the political, economic and social ecosystems of the region.

The results of the interviews will be compiled into a report to the organization and will help our team build an impact management framework. The framework will allow the organization to measure, manage, and communicate their impact on the Irish community.

“M-Force Consulting Team with iCare founder David Hall at the iCare Office in Dublin, Ireland. Pictured (from L-R), Tyler Higginson (MBA/IPD ’18), Melody Jensen (MBA/IPD ’19), David Hall and Jillian Flavin (MBA/IEP ’18).”

This experience was particularly impactful because we were able to apply lessons learned in the classroom to actual real-world experiences. Furthermore, we were able to expand our network and meet individuals in Ireland’s social impact space. I am currently pursuing a career in social impact, and the best way to transition from a student to a professional in this sector is by working on relevant projects with real-world clients and to continuously expand your network. I was also introduced to several individuals working at the Allied Irish Bank (AIB), one of Ireland’s largest banks, and we engaged in conversations about expanding their impact management as well.

Furthermore, this experience is assisting me in developing an impact framework and impact metrics for a local company that wants to better understand how to measure the social and environmental impact of their global operations.


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