In its inaugural year, the iCOP partnered with Students without Borders and World University Service of Canada (WUSC), a Canadian based development agency. The two MBA students that took part in 2008 were Olivier Romain and Malaz Sebai.
Wanting to assist in international development, Olivier co-founded iCOP in 2008. With a law degree from Université Laval, he had worked in both a private law firm and a multinational corporation when he decided to broaden his business knowledge and horizons.
In iCOP’s inaugural year, Romain spent that summer in Los Olivos, a municipality in the city of Lima, Peru providing legal expertise and advisement. He worked with the assistant mayor in the creation of a municipal bank to assist micro- and small businesses in getting access to funding to help them reach local, national and international markets.
Malaz holds an MBA degree from JMSB where he specialized in the administration of non-profit organizations. He has worked extensively with local nonprofits, providing strategic consulting services to managers of various nonprofits.
Wanting to make a similar impact overseas, Malaz travelled to Botswana, where he volunteered for an arts & crafts wholesaler as a manager, helping with the development of marginalized San communities in Botswana.
Motivated by his experience, and determined to give others the same opportunities he was fortunate to have, he co-founded iCOP and directed it during its first 2 years. He still continues to be involved with iCOP, now serving on its Advisory Board.
In summer 2009, iCOP partnered with M.A.P.L.E. Microdevelopment based out of the University of Orgeon. M.A.P.L.E. Microdevelopment (Microfinance for the Alleviation of Poverty through Learning and Entrepreneurship) is dedicated to community empowerment, poverty reduction, and sustainable development along the UN Millennium Goals.
In the summer of 2009 Shawna Rose traveled to Uganda to work in micro-finance, community development, and sustainability in Mbale, Uganda for 8 weeks. Shawna’s work focused on education, building partnerships, and researching the potential for developing and incentivizing environmentally sustainable businesses.
Inspired and motivated by her experience, Shawna returned home and took the reigns of iCOP's development by becoming its Program Director. Her experience with iCOP and exposure to international development crafted Shawna a new career path where upon completing her MBA she become the Quebec office Director for Free the Children.
All our work placements are designed to relate to any or all aspects of sustainability: social development, economic development and environmental protection. This year, our participants will be working in Mbale and Lira, Uganda.
Kelly is the fourth member of the Concordia community to participate in the iCOP program. She has been active on the iCOP executive team for the past year through her role as Communications Officer. She was also the VP MBA International Case Competition for the John Molson Sustainable Business Group and the VP Marketing for the John Molson Women in Business Club.
Kelly hopes to challenge herself while in Uganda to apply what she has learned during the MBA program and in some small way make an impact on the Mbale community.
Irene is a full-time student at Concordia JMSB’s MBA and working at the same time as a legal consultant for an international NAFTA-related organization: the North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation. Originally from France, she is a lawyer (LLB, LLM) specialized in international and environmental law, whose plan for the future is to manage projects of international cooperation with developing countries. Irene recently had the opportunity to do a mission promoting human rights to Colombia as a member of Lawyers Without Borders Canada.
Irene believes that helping local entrepreneurs to develop their business in Africa or Latin America is a very tangible and effective way to contribute to the sustainable development of their countries. Partly motivated by her sentimental bond with Africa (her husband is Senegalese), she volunteered for a two-months work experience in Uganda with iCOP, to assist with community development through mentorship and business management training programs for entrepreneurs and village based savings & credit cooperatives.
Temujin is a JMSB student with a background in Marketing. He believes that people should experience in life as much as possible to reach their full potential. Temujin plans to adapt the ROSE program to include young men through the ROSE Extension Program. The life-skills curriculum helps Mbale street children stay in school and prepare for brighter futures.