“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” – Henry miller

Nikki first travelled to Guatemala in 2011, through a Fellowship with the international microfinance, women’s empowerment, and fair trade organization, Nest, and its local Guatemalan partner, Oxlajuj B’atz’ (Thirteen Threads). For three months, Nikki worked with cooperatives of indigenous Mayan weavers, learning about their production processes and capacities, assisting with business and community development workshops, and seeking to create more robust market opportunities for their products on a fair trade market. To read more about Brand’s experience living and working in Guatemala during summer 2011, check out her previous blog, Notes From the Nest!

After graduating from UC Berkeley with a B.A. in Peace & Conflict Studies and minors in Spanish and Global Poverty & Practice, Nikki will be returning to Guatemala as a Field Consultant for the social entrepreneurship non-profit Community Enterprise Solutions. As the Consultant for the Solola region, Nikki will assist with the organization’s microconsignment model, identifying and training men and women in rural Guatemalan villages to be microentrepreneurs – selling socially-useful products like eyeglasses, high efficiency stoves, and solar powered lights within their own communities.

Though originally from Washington, DC, Nikki’s wanderlust has taken her all around the world, from summers spent in Ecuador, southern Spain, and Guatemala, to a semester studying Spanish language and culture in Madrid, Spain.