Each summer, OFN interns make outstanding contributions to the community development finance field, and this year is no different. Our five interns share a passion for OFN’s work and a desire to grow the CDFI industry. To introduce you to these remarkable future leaders, strategic communications intern Joey Dunn is sitting down with a different intern each week. They will talk OFN, CDFIs, summer fun, their personal backstories, and even time travel. We’ve also asked each supervisor to share a few words about his or her intern.
This week, we learn more about OFN financial data analysis intern, Archimede Bizoza, and the role he is playing at the organization this summer.
Name: Archimede Bizoza
Bio: Archimede Bizoza or “Archi” is a financial data analysis intern on the OFN research team. Archi was born in Bujumbura, Burundi, in East Africa and grew up in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where he attended French school while also learning Swahili. Archi left Africa as a teenager to spend his last few years of high school abroad in Wuxi, China, before traveling to the United States to earn his Bachelor of Business Administration degree at the University of San Francisco.
After college, Archi moved to Washington D.C. to pursue his career and earn an MBA in Data Analytics at American University. Archi speaks five languages, including French, English, Swahili, Mandarin, and his native tongue, Kirundi. He now hopes to learn the language of financial data analysis in order to help increase access to equal opportunity for individuals across the U.S. and the world.
OFN Position: Financial Data Analysis Intern on the Research team
Major & School: BS in Business Administration, Finance, at the University of San Francisco, MS in Finance, and currently earning an MBA in Data Analytics at American University
Hometown: Bujumbura, Burundi, East Africa
Hidden Talent: Singing! I used to sing in a choir in middle school, but now I mostly just stick to killing it on karaoke night.
“In just a few weeks Archi has already demonstrated his strong analytic skills, extensive knowledge of financial institutions, and a commitment to OFN’s mission. Add the fact that he’s friendly, has a good sense of humor, and shares enlightening stories from his home country, Burundi, and you can see why we all wish he could keep stay on after summer!”
– Lance Loethen, Vice President of Research at OFN
What attracted you to the CDFI industry and OFN?
I first learned about CDFIs last year when I attended an educational panel on CDFIs at the Net Impact Conference on business and social justice in Phoenix, Arizona. I was really attracted to the CDFI mission, which focuses on ensuring that low-income, low-wealth, and other underserved people and communities have access to affordable, responsible financial products and services. I later learned that fellow intern Aaron coincidently attended the exact same panel, which must mean they were doing a good job! I applied to OFN because of their goal to lead and aid CDFIs and their partners in their mission towards equal opportunity. Additionally, I thought OFN could teach me a lot about the industry and hopefully help me towards my goals. Specifically, I hope to one day start a nonprofit in Burundi that will help students who have just graduated high school to go abroad and continue their education despite a lack of money and resources.
Tell us about some of the projects you are working on. How will they help OFN and the industry as a whole?
I have worked on a few projects so far. Right now, I am working on a credit union database, which involves putting together a whole database with various accounts for 2018. I have also been looking at responses from the Wells Fargo Diverse Community Capital program survey for 2018, which I have been analyzing and summarizing. I think that my various projects provide the necessary data on CDFIs and their partners, which hopefully helps OFN run more smoothly and contributes to the organization’s ability to strive towards and accomplish its mission.
What have you learned about OFN and the CDFI industry that you didn’t know when you started?
I have learned the importance of the educational aspect within the industry. Before working here, I had not realized how much OFN helps CDFIs by providing learning opportunities through workshops, conferences, meetings, etc. In other words, I had not realized that OFN provided such technical assistance, which seems to enable other CDFIs to succeed and become much better financial practitioners.
What are you up to this summer when you’re not at OFN?
When I am not working, I try to travel and sightsee as much as possible. I have enjoyed going to museums, seeing movies, swimming, and visiting friends in my free time. I am also trying to teach myself a new programming software to be better equipped for the future. After my internship with OFN is complete, I am really looking forward to going back home to visit my family in Burundi, where we are having a big family reunion.
If you could travel back in time, where and when would you travel?
I would probably travel back to the civil rights movement because I would love to meet Martin Luther King Jr. I think it would be fascinating to interview him and learn his ideas and about his experiences.
What are you going to take away from this experience? And what will be your lasting impression of OFN and CDFIs?
I think that I will definitely know a lot more about the CDFI industry as a whole. I think meeting and working with the people in the industry has and will help me gain a lot more personal insight into what this work is really like. I will also have greatly improved my technical skills, for instance, I now know how to create databases. My lasting impression of OFN will be related to how great the people are here. Everyone is so friendly and welcoming, and I am really grateful for the opportunity to meet and form relationships with the employees and my fellow interns.
Learn more about OFN’s internship program and other career opportunities at OFN.