Hometown: Alexandria, Virginia, USA
Thomas Jefferson High School
Comparative Capitalist Systems was my most enjoyable and meaningful class freshman year. As a student who chose to turn down Harvard in favor of the Huntsman Program, I felt that this class reinforced the reasons why I made my decision in the first place. The class dismissed my suspicion that the emphasis is really on the practical business aspect. As one of the many students more interested in the theoretical framework of international economics and business, I can’t imagine a better introductory course.
Joyce Meng has never once regretted turning down Harvard for the opportunity to major in both Finance and International Studies through the Huntsman Program. (She also earned minors in Spanish and Mathematics.) Among other things, she was captain of the debate team, board member of the Wharton China Business Society and a player for the women's ice hockey team. Throughout her time at Penn she pursued her interest in social justice - as a fellow of the StartingBloc Institute for Social Innovation and as an intern at the Global Interdependence Center. Furthermore, as a Wharton Research Scholar, Benjamin Franklin Scholar, and Joseph Wharton Scholar, Joyce was heavily involved in research. She worked closely with many Wharton professors, focusing particularly on debt relief in Latin America, federalism and economic growth, and expanding Chinese-Latin American trade relations.
At the end of her senior year, Joyce won the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to attend Oxford University for graduate studies. She graduated with distinction from the MSc Economics for Development and MSc Financial Economics programs, receiving the Arthur Lewis Prize for Excellence in Development Economics. She has always accompanied her academic studies with practical experience in international development. She has done field work for FINCA International, the Nantik Lum Foundation, and Opportunity International. She considers education one of the most vital resources for individual empowerment and poverty alleviation. As co-founder and CEO of Givology, a microfinance initiative that connects individual donors to grassroots education projects and student scholarships, she has realized one of her dreams of promoting education around the world. Since its founding in 2008, Givology has grown to a network of 50 grassroots partnerships in 30 different countries and raised over $430,000 to help 3,100+ students through its network of 15,000+ donors, 19 global chapters, and 200 volunteers. As a 100% volunteer-run organization, Givology has a philosophy that small dollars and small hours can aggregate into a powerful force of change. Joyce and her co-founder Jennifer Chen (fellow Huntsman classmate) were named Forbes 30 under 30 in Education (2014), and Givology has been recognized in Half the Sky, MTV Act, among other media sources.
As her day job, Joyce pursues a career in investing as a co-founding member and senior analyst at Vernier Capital, a global investment fund with a fundamental approach to equity investing. Prior to Vernier Capital, Joyce worked at Goldman Sachs Investment Partners as an industrials analyst and MSD Capital as an energy investor.