On Monday, February 15, 2016 the Center for International Development (CID) at Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU) hosted the San Diego Global Poverty Forum on Point Loma’s campus. 


The engaging half-day event brought leading speakers from around the world to discuss and debate cutting edge ideas and research in the field of global poverty alleviation. “The CID exists to mentor students, support faculty, and engage the external community in the study and application of holistic business practices to alleviate global poverty,” said CID director Rob Gailey, PhD. “Today’s dialogue between experts in the field, our PLNU community, non-profit leaders and other members of the San Diego community is a tangible example of that mission.”  


Kicking off the afternoon’s speaker series, Bruce Wydick, PhD, professor of economics at the University of San Francisco and author of Games in Economic Development and The Taste of Many Mountains, provided an analysis of the top 10 most cost-effective poverty alleviation methods according to economists. Wydick went a step further to break down those 10 methods into two groups; those providing the most benefit and those with limited to no impact on the individuals intended to serve. The immeasurable benefits of simple mosquito nets and the negligible impact of fair trade coffee surprised many in the audience.


Building on Wydick’s introduction of effective giving mechanisms, University of California, San Diego professor of economics, Paul Niehaus, PhD, provided an in-depth analysis of direct person to person giving. As president and co-founder of GiveDirectly, Niehaus brought unique insight into the challenges of traditional giving and unique opportunities of direct transfers to poor people. “Traditional ways of giving internationally are complex,” explained Niehaus. “Advances in payments technology have drastically cut the costs of direct transfers and new research also supports the powerful impacts this has on recipients. At GiveDirectly we see these trends converging to make direct giving the benchmark against which the old, top-down models are evaluated.” 


Dianne Calvi, president and CEO of Village Enterprise, wrapped up the individual speaker presentations with an evaluation of the data on micro-entrepreneurship and its impact on poverty and the role of hope in the individual experience. Village Enterprise, which was the inspiration for the founders of, has trained more than 130,000 micro-enterprise owners and helped start more than 30,000 small businesses in Kenya and Uganda. Following the presentations, the panelists convened for a robust conversation with the audience facilitated by Gailey. 


The day's events concluded with a private dinner reception for friends and supporters of the CID. Guests were joined by Wydick, Niehaus, Calvi, PLNU's President Bob Brower, PhD, and recent PLNU alumni who remain active with the CID. “Our passion at the CID is to help young people who want to make a difference in the fight against global poverty, but may not be sure where to start,” explained Gailey. “Your support allows us to connect those students who want to make a difference in the world, with the latest innovation and ideas about business and entrepreneurship as a way of breaking the cycle of global poverty.”


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The Center for International Development (CID) is a key initiative of the Fermanian School of Business at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, California. We believe breaking the cycle of global poverty in a sustainable way requires more than just handouts and foreign aid, and that business and entrepreneurship can play a key role in this process. Our focus is to connect people concerned about global poverty with key organizations, resources and thought leaders in this field who share our passion.


Center for International Development, External Relations, Fermanian Business & Economic Institute


Point Loma Nazarene University

Contact: Jonathan Pickett (661) 433-5814

Point TV: Channel 23

Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358

Date: February 18, 2016

Written by: Jonathan Pickett


Two special guests visit Media Communication course

Students were treated to two guest appearances on Monday, February 15th in their Field Production course - both who have work experience and insight that were beneficial for students to hear about.

The first guest speaker was Director of the Los Angeles Film Studies Center, Rebecca Ver Straten-McSparran. After students fueled up on coffee and cupcakes, courtesy of Rebecca and her husband, she went on to explain the inner workings of LAFSC, as well as show the students their facilities and the community apartments where students stay when they spend a semester in the program.

Point TV

Following Rebecca’s appearance was former PLNU student Hilary Zeber, who is now a producer at AwesomenessTV, a media and entertainment company owned by Dreamworks. She talked about the path that led to her working for a show called “Top 5 Live” and being promoted to associate producer in less than year - all starting with a simple online application and an interview in LA. 

Jacob Boyd is a senior Media Communication major with a concentration in Film Studies, who will be heading to LAFSC in the fall to study for a semester. 

“Having Rebecca come to class and talk about the program was a great way for film students to get excited for what’s in store,” said Boyd. “Not only do they have top-notch facilities and technology for the students, but it seems like they genuinely care about the lives of LAFSC alums.”

The art of collaboration is a huge focus at LAFSC, among the other film production-related classes. According to Rebecca, this is because working collaboratively in Hollywood is such an important skill to have if you want to go into the film industry. 

“In our Hollywood Production workshop, students choose teams and collaborate in order to make budgeted, film festival-ready short films,” Rebecca said. 

Additionally, Rebecca talked about the LAFSC’s role in the students lives once they graduate from the center, because according to her, that is when her job is just starting. 

“We offer all sorts of post-graduate resources for our students like short film grants, connections in the industry, referrals to production companies, mentorships - we just want to maintain that relationship with our students to ensure their success.” 

Point TV

Hilary Zeber was also getting students excited for the future as she talked about her experience so far as a Dreamworks employee. After being hired as an assistant producer, Zeber realized that many of the things she did with Point TV benefitted her by giving her the edge and experience over other candidates.

“Lots of what I’m doing with AwesomenessTV is just like what I did here, just on a larger scale,” Zeber said. 

She didn’t come without specifics though. According to Zeber, students should always do more than was asked of them, and then ask to do some more, because that is the kind of work ethic that professional television and film producers see value in students who are just starting their careers. And for positions like Assistant Producer, when they see someone step up and they see their strengths, they’ll give more responsibilities, which is how she landed her recent promotion to Associate Producer. 

Zeber ended on another note of encouragement: “We have lots of good internships, plus there’s room for growth within Dreamworks, so if you apply, I’ll make sure to put in a word for a fellow Point TV student!”

For information regarding Point TV, contact Alan Hueth at or Jonathan Pickett at

Communications & Theatre
The January edition of Sociology of Education is out, which includes Dan's co-authored article: "Career Funneling: How Elite Students Learn to Define and Desire 'Prestigious' Jobs."  The article explores how a few dominant players in three key industries (finance, consulting, and high-tech) have positioned themselves to receive an outsized portion of student talent from top campuses.  Ultimately, the article points to the role of universities as organizational actors with a large role in this student-funneling effect.  This has direct implications for the reproduction of privilege and the further growth of income stratification.
View the complete article here.
Sociology & Social Work

The Fermanian Business & Economic Institute released their sixth Economic Outlook Study for the year of 2016. To view the report, go here.

Fermanian Business & Economic Institute

Join us for the Just Saying spoken word event Thursday, February 11th, 2016. Join us at 7pm in PLNU's Brown Chapel for an evening with Eugene Cho and other SoCal musicians and fellow slam poets. 

This event is sponsored by World Relief, PLNU's Center for Justice & Reconciliation, PLNU's Center for International Development, PLNU Spiritual Development, and San Diego Churches Against Trafficking. 

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Center for Justice & Reconciliation