Acting as ONE: Student Attends Power 100 Global Poverty Summit



This past weekend, sophomore Lindsay Miller attended the Power 100 Global Poverty Summit in Washington, D.C. Hosted by the ONE organization, the conference invited leaders from the “top 100” schools involved in the ONE Campus Challenge (OCC). The OCC entails weekly participation in which students work to “educate others about extreme poverty and global disease,” according to Miller. Guests at the summit included members of Congress, leaders of international organizations, model Lauren Bush and actor Anthony Edwards.

Miller heard about the OCC through her involvement in an Oxfam change initiative over the summer, and after receiving additional information about the effort, she decided to become a campus leader. Competing with other schools across the country, Miller now works to win “points” for Colgate, which can be earned through simple tasks like students adding their information to a mailing list or signing a letter to their congressperson. Recently, the OCC group held a weeklong event in the O’Connor Campus Center (Coop) offering t-shirts and ONE wristbands.

Following in the goals of the ONE campaign, the Campus Challenge is meant to spread advocacy and awareness. As a leader of the OCC, Miller earned her spot at the Summit by upholding these goals “on Colgate’s campus and throughout her community.”

The conference began on Friday, February 6. Jake Sasseville, host of ABC’s “The Edge with Jake Sasseville,” welcomed the group. He has traveled to Africa, a region focused on in the Summit, and is planning on welcoming a student from the winning campus onto his show. On Saturday, the Summit was filled with various panels of media representatives, people who had worked on the Obama, McCain and Clinton campaigns and people who had started their own organizations.

“It was really bi-partisan,” Miller said. “It’s important to have that, to stress that poverty affects everyone.”

The band Hanson, one of the first guest speakers, discussed their recent work in South Africa and involvement with the American company TOMS Shoes – an organization that Colgate’s Amnesty International group works with as well. The Hanson trio has also formed their own program, called “Take the Walk,” in which they get people to walk a mile together, then donate a dollar for every person who participated.

Also featured at the Summit were the FEED Projects, created by former President George W. Bush’s niece Lauren Bush. FEED Projects sell FEED Bags, the proceeds from which go to feed children in Rwanda.

Two men from Kenya also spoke at the Summit. They had been sent to college at Dartmouth and attended medical school, all the while raising money and building a clinic in their hometown in Africa. A group of girls similarly described their efforts to raise money to build a well in Sudan.

Sunday was devoted to student organization, especially planning and execution of ideas.

“I learned a lot about how to be an effective leader,” Miller said. “I had an amazing experience. I learned so much … the staff here [at Colgate] is small to begin with, but there are so many cool ideas and things we can do. There’s a lot of room to go places.”

As of December 3, Colgate ranked around 60 in the Power 100, above schools like Cornell, though Colgate’s only in its second year as a member of the OCC. The grand prize for the top ten schools includes $1,000 to put towards a final project, and the top individual leaders will earn a trip to Africa.

“In the future, our goal is to be part of the top ten,” Miller said. “One great thing about the Campus Challenge is that it’s so easy… [and] it makes such a huge difference.”