Summer Blog: Alyssa Saldana Spends Her Summer in Los Angeles

Alyssa Saldana at her internship in Los Angeles, Calif.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.- Junior Alyssa Saldana of the Harvard softball team spent her summer in Los Angeles, Calif. with an Impact Investing firm. Read about her experience below.

Alyssa Saldaña Summer Blog:
This summer I was fortunate enough to work in Los Angeles, California with an Impact Investing firm by the name of Avivar Capital. Impact Investing occurs when finance meets social necessity. Our firm was responsible for managing investment portfolios that targeted driven funds which not only had financial returns but also social and environmental returns with a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our firm worked alongside foundations, healthcare centers, nonprofits, philanthropies, and a variety of other institutions that are geared towards bettering the communities around them.

Each week I would drive into Los Angeles to work in office. My days consisted of many calls and meetings with clients and learning about our targeted locations through both field and virtual tours of those areas. One example of a specific project I worked on was the New Mexico Impact Investing Collaborative (NMIIC). NMIIC is made up by a number of funding members who share the goal of supporting healthy, equitable, sustainable, and economically vibrant communities within New Mexico. Our role consisted of facilitating, managing and marketing this movement.

From my experience I learned more than I could have ever hoped to and was rewarded not only with knowledge of investments but also that of making a difference across the U.S. Specifically, I realized that a market exists where an understanding for numbers can be matched with a passion for helping others. That being said, the greatest take away that came from working with Avivar Capital was the relationships I made. Each week was filled with team lunches, dinners, and excursions. I have never felt more welcomed by a group of individuals who acted as both career and life mentors. It was truly special working alongside others who shared the same passion for facilitating change through investment and policy.