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Alumni Profile

Veena Jayadeva

Veena Jayadeva, MBA ’10


  • Revitalized Sloan Women in Management (SWIM)
  • Conducted early research on microfinance at the World Bank
  • Worked at a non-profit in India to help 15,000 female entrepreneurs a year attain microloans

A poor woman who started her own stonecutting business outside Bangalore inspired Veena Jayadeva to come to MIT Sloan and spend her life empowering female entrepreneurs. The stonecutter, Sabeera, had been poor her entire life and started her business with a microloan in 1998 from a non-profit for which Jayadeva was working. Sabeera eventually purchased a house and provided employment for her sons, and now her home is filled with the laughter of happy, healthy grandchildren who attend school.

“Seeing firsthand the impact of microfinance sparked my passion for helping female entrepreneurs,” says Jayadeva. After researching the global supply of microfinance for the World Bank, she moved to India in 2003 to ground her global viewpoints in local experiences and understand how her work affected entrepreneurs abroad. For two years, she worked for a local non-profit that provided microcredit to women to start businesses. After meeting women like Sabeera, Jayadeva applied to MIT Sloan to enhance her ability to positively change the economic landscape of developing nations.

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