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Empowering International Students as Change Agents: A Case Study on MPOWER Financing

Joseph Garavente March 1, 2023

The global pandemic has highlighted the critical role of education in driving economic growth and social mobility. However, access to financing remains a challenge, especially for underrepresented communities like international students.

In this session, Manu Smadja, CEO and co-founder of MPOWER Financing, and Rajika Bhandari, Ph.D., an international higher education expert/author, share insights in expanding the U.S. and Canadian higher education financing ecosystem to serve more of the world’s highest-potential individuals – while contributing to social impact and empowering international students as change agents.


Insights on the challenges/opportunities facing higher education
Overview of how innovative education financing models can democratize access to higher education
Focus on economic growth/social impact


Fireside Chat (3 speakers maximum)


higher education, economic growth, social mobility, access to education, underrepresented communities, fintech, scholarships, refugees, refugee students, DACA students, loans, social impact, international students, education challenges, opportunities, innovative financing models, change agents, sustainable development goals, SDGs

Purpose and Desired Outcome

The session’s aim is to increase awareness and understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing international and DACA students and how innovative education financing models (like MPOWER Financing' can help increase access to quality education, promote social impact and empower international students as change agents in their communities and beyond. Additionally, it could provide an opportunity for investors, policymakers and education stakeholders to learn about innovative financing models for higher education and encourage them to support initiatives that promote social impact.


  • Corporate & SME

  • Government

  • Academia

  • Entrepreneurs


  • NameManu Smadja
  • TitleFounder & CEO
  • OrganizationMPOWER Financing
  • StatusConfirmed
  • NameRajika Bhandari Ph. D.
  • Title Author and Principal
  • OrganizationRajika Bhandari Advisors
  • StatusInvited
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