Young Entrepreneurs for Leadership and Change



GEB4930 - Exploring Entrepreneurship - Professor Bill Rossi

SYG2010 - Social Problems & Solutions- Dr. Kristin Joos


Dr. Kristin Joos is the Director for the Young Entrepreneurs for Leadership & Sustainability High School Summer Program at UF. In 2005 she brought Social Entrepreneurship to UF and created the Innovative Sustainability & Social Impact Initiative in the Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. Kristin is a UF graduate, earning her bachelors degree in Psychology with minors in Sociology, Religion, and Women's & Gender Studies. In 2003 she graduated with a Ph.D. in Sociology & a graduate certificate from the Center for Women's Studies and Gender Research. Her research interests center around youth, social entrepreneurship, civic engagement, community service and creating positive social change. Kristin is passionate about teaching students to use the skills & strategies of business to create innovative & sustainable solutions to social, environmental, and economic problems locally and around the world. From 2003-2006 she served as the Coordinator of Admissions & Student Activities for the Honors Program at UF; she is now a Lecturer, teaching courses in Sociology and Social Entrepreneurship.

Program Assistants:

Melissa Miller will graduate from UF in May as an Honors student majoring in Sociology and double minoring in Business and Sustainability Studies. She is involved in various leadership and service organizations on campus, including Florida Alternative Breaks, Gator Non-Profit Professionals, and UF Study Abroad Peer Advisors. She is also an intern with the UF Office of Sustainability. Melissa has studied abroad in Paris, France, at the University of Florida's Paris Research Center and has attended the Oikos Winter School in Germany for Sustainability in Economics and Management and attended the Clinton Global Initiative University in Miami this April. She plans to pursue a career path working to influence new sustainable policies in the social and business sectors to help build a healthier, environmentally aware society. In 2008 she worked as a Program Assistant for the 3rd Annual YELS Summer Program and is excited to be a part of this summer's experience. Melissa is a graduate of Brandon High School in Brandon, FL.

Anna Belen Petersen graduated with Honors from UF in December of 2009, majoring in Sociology and minoring in Written & Oral Communications. During her time as an undergraduate Gator, Anna served as a Resident Assistant in Jennings and Broward Halls, as an Undergraduate T.I. for SYG 2010-Social Problems, and as a Conference Director on the Women's Leadership Council. She also took part in the AKD Sociology Honors Society and UF's Pride Student Union. She proudly participated in the Florida LeaderShape Institute in 2008 and that same year, traveled to Nepal as a grant recipient in the University Scholars Program to conduct qualitative research. She has also volunteered her time with Project Nepal (Kathmandu City, Nepal) and with the Harvest of Hope Foundation. Anna has studied abroad in Barcelona, Spain and has enjoyed spending her summers on the Senior Barn staff at YMCA's Camp Echo in Fremont, Michigan. Born in Argentina, Anna is fluent in Spanish and is proficient in Portuguese and French. Anna aspires to learn and grow as a Peace Corps Volunteer in 2011 and to continue to work in the name of empowering women, youth, and marginalized peoples and revolutionizing the educational infrastructure in America. Anna is a graduate of Cypress Bay High School in Weston, FL.

RAs for Girls:

Katie Heroux is a fourth year Honors student, majoring in Finance and pursuing a minor in Sustainability. She has been involved with various leadership and service organizations on campus, including Gators for Sustainable campus, Navigators, The Student Honors Organization, and Friends for Life. She is passionate about her academic interests and has pursued extracurricular activities that have allowed her to continue her education experientially such as being a site-leader for Florida Alternative Breaks, the Donor Relations Chair and Kitchen Manager for The Campus Kitchens Project, an intern in the Finance Department at the Harn Museum and an intern with the UF Office of Sustainability. She has also studied abroad at the Paris Research center in France with the University of Florida's Honors in Paris program and attended an international economic and sustainability conference in Witten Germany. Upon graduation in December, Katie hopes to work for a socially responsible enterprise such as Tom's Shoes or to promote sustainability in the corporate finance world. Katie graduated a varsity athlete from Oviedo High School, and has used these skills to empower young students for two summers through sports camps. In 2009 she worked as an RA with our 3rd Annual YELC Summer Program and she is excited to have the opportunity to inspire and encourage students to become active citizens in their community again this summer.

Kelly McGovern graduated from the University of Florida in May 2010 majoring in Finance and minoring in Art History. During her time at UF she worked for RecSports as an Operations Associate, was a finance intern at the Harn Museum of Art, and swam with the Club Alligator Swim Team. She also volunteered with organizations such as the Ronald McDonald House of Gainesville and Friends for Life as a Hospital Correspondent. Last summer she worked at a camp in New Hampshire as a camp counselor and lifeguard. She recently returned from travels in Paris & London. After taking a year off to travel and volunteer abroad, Kelly plans to attend graduate school to pursue a masterʼs degree in International Relations. Kelly is a graduate of Oviedo High School in Oviedo, Florida.

RA for Guys:

Christian Moreno is a 2nd year student majoring in Marketing from Jacksonville, FL, pursuing a minor in Entrepreneurship. He is involved in numerous leadership and service organizations in the University of Florida community, including: The Florida Cicerones/SAA: the official student ambassadors of the University of Florida, Gators of Tomorrow: 25 freshmen at the University of Florida who seek to make great accomplishments both on campus and in the community during their college career, Florida Alternative Breaks: he participated on the migrant workers trip to Immokalee and learned more about the everyday struggle of migrant workers. Apart from academics, Christian graduated with Varsity letters in Soccer and Cross Country and has continued his passion for sports through intramurals in college. Christian has worked as a Museum of Science and History summer camp counselor for the past two years and is excited to work with the YELS program. He graduated from Paxton School of Advanced Studies in Jacksonville, FL.

Activities Assistants

Nicholas Kemp-Greenhood is a fifth year student in the Horticulture department, pursuing a specialization in Organic Crop Production, and more recently a minor in Sustainability Studies. Nick is heavily involved in all things food at UF and in Gainesville. He was on the founding executive committee of the Organic and Sustainable Agriculture Club, and has been its president since 2009. He has also served as an intern and employee of QCS, a local organic certification agency which is a subsidiary of Florida Organic Growers, a non-profit that represents the interests of alternative agriculture in Florida. In the summer of 2009 he traveled to Madrid, Spain, with a group of scholars from UF's IFAS program to study the state of organic certification, ecological certification, and other alternative agricultural methods in the European Union. He has also served as a summer season intern at Farm Girl Farm, an experimental community-supported ecofeminist farm and market garden in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. Most recently, Nick and his partner have begun the process of founding a chapter of Slow Food on Campus at UF to serve both UF's student body and the greater Alachua County community. Nick graduated from the IB Program at Eastside High School in Gainesville.

Matt Tringali graduated this past semester with a degree in finance. During his time at UF he was a member of the Florida Leadership Academy, where he served as a Peer Mentor as well as on the Advisory Board. Additionally, he served as Director of Campus Relations and President of the Warrington Diplomats, the official ambassadors to the Warrington College of Business Administration. This past spring break Matt participated in a FAB disaster recovery trip to Houma, Louisiana. Matt graduated from Lecanto High School as a varsity tennis and soccer player, and will use the skills he's accumulated throughout his four years here to start his own social venture.

Teaching Assistants

Katie Anderson is going into her third year at UF, majoring in Event Management. She is involved in several organizations on campus, including leadership positions in the Leisure Education and Parks Students organization. She is currently interning at the University of Florida's College of Medicine at the Alumni Affairs department. Katie participated in the YELC program during its first year in 2007, before graduating from Cardinal Gibbons High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She served as an Alumni Ambassador for YELC in 2008.

Kelly Mejia is a third year student majoring in Sociology and English with a minor in Urban Regional Planning. She is a member of Phi Mu sorority where she is House Manager and Philanthropy Chair, on campus she is involved with Extreme Dance Company, TriGators, and Dance Marathon. Kelly participated in the YELS Program during its first year, in 2007, before graduating from the William H. Turner Technical Arts High School and served as an Alumni Ambassador for YELS in 2008.