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The GREEN Program - Company of the Year

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Company: The GREEN Program, Philadelphia, PA
Company Description: The GREEN Program (TGP) is an experiential education and workforce development program for young leaders in sustainable development. Created for students, by students, TGP has introduced a new model for education abroad–driven by a desire to provide purposeful, hands-on industry exposure at a fraction of the time and cost.
Nomination Category: Company/Organization Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Company of the Year – Consumer Services – 10 or Less Employees

Nomination Title: The GREEN Program

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated organization since the beginning of July last year (up to 525 words):

The GREEN Program (TGP) is an award-winningexperiential educationfor young leaders in sustainable development. Created for students, by students, TGP has introduced a new model for education abroad–driven by a desire to provide purposeful, hands-on industry exposure at a fraction of the time and cost. Inspired by the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, our short-term, accredited, career focused approach creates truly transformative experiences for students around the world; we helpunlockdoors to governmental, public, and private facility access, exclusive tours, and unique bucket-list experiences.

Our unique partnerships with universities around the world allow our students to have a truly authentic experience by learning from local professors, experts and government officials. TGP seeks to redefine the classroom by enabling one-of-a-kind experiences like studying the effects of climate change on the top of our world’s glaciers.

Our program model helps students maximize their winter, spring, and summer breaks,allowingthem to get in a fulfilling educational abroad experience within just 10 days. We don’t want students to choose between a job, internship, or a study abroad experience. We want them to do it all. In fact, 99% of GREEN Alumni say that TGP has refined their purpose professionally, personally, or academically. Alumni often credit TGP for helping them attain careers at companies such as General Electric, SpaceX, Tesla, Boeing, NASA, NREL, and more. Our applicants attract a diverse array of life experiences and stories from across 470 universities and 70 countries who all have a passion for sustainable development. TGP attracts opportunity-seeking, motivated, young leaders, and “student-preneurs” in STEM fields.

In addition, we've created a talent curation service for corporations and scholarship fund for disadvantaged, underrepresented, and underserved students. Our goal is to break down key barriers to education abroad and increase diversity in the workforce. We–along with our fiscal sponsors, 501c3 non-profit partners, hiring partners and donors–believe in investing in conscious travel and education to provide a global support network for our next generation to achieve sustainably-focused career goals.

In August 2017, welaunchedour Fukushima,Japan program destination, our most advanced program to date. Focusing on disaster mitigation and nuclear to renewable transitions, students receive “top-secret” access to Fukushima’s Daiichi nuclear power plant, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency, Fukushima Renewable Energy Agency, and more. TGP students are among the first in the travel industry to study disaster mitigation and nuclear to renewable transitions in Fukushima. Since the program's launch, we've received more than 670 applications; due to a high volume of applicants, we are currently tripling program offerings to Fukushima and piloting more program destinations.

The GREEN Program has been awarded"Best Education Abroad Provider" by The World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation, Forbes 30 Under 30 in Education,Philadelphia’s Green Innovator of the Year by the Clean Air Council, Environmental Advocate of the Year by the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO),Bustle Upstart Awards recipient, Top 50 Social Impact Ventures in the World at the New York Stock Exchange, Top 10 Young Companies Driving Social Change at the United Nations Social Innovation Summit, and the Top 3 Student-Founded Companies in the World at the New York Stock Exchange.

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Provide a brief biography of the person or persons who lead the nominated company (up to 125 words):

Melissa Lee is an entrepreneur, advocate for sustainability, and Founder and CEO of The GREEN Program. Having founded The GREEN Program as a sophomore at Rutgers University, Lee is driven by a desire to reshape higher education curricula to include purposeful, hands-on industry exposure and experience for students. As CEO, Lee has expanded The GREEN Program beyond its roots as an experiential education program, partnering with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Solutions Network and the World Bank's Climate4Climate program to create a global, socially-conscious, public benefit company. A firstgeneration Chinese-American, Lee is an enthusiast for oceanification, purposeful travel, and culinary trends, and she is passionate about the management and sustainability of these industries.

Choose one (even if both apply): The CEO (or other principal manager) of this company is a woman, and at least 90% of the management team is comprised of women.