Members of NC’s Enactus team are pictured at the regional competition held in Toronto last month. Top row from left: Renee Benjamin, Christa O’Howe, Greg McArthur, Katherine Perrin, Megan Paterson and Cheria Iranbona. Bottom row: Fred Donkar, Nathan Lodde and Brandon Sloan.
Eight students from Niagara College’s Enactus team are travelling to Calgary to participate in the Enactus Canada Canadian National Exposition April 28-30.
During the three-day event, students will compete against about 60 other academic institutions from across Canada. Their 17-minute presentation will showcase how their volunteer projects have helped their community economically, socially and environmentally. The team will go through rounds of live presentation, judged by business leaders who will determine which team will be named national champions.
Greg McArthur, who just completed his third year of the Business Administration: International Business program and is the outgoing president of the Enactus Team, noted that the team’s presentation will focus on two major projects. Ready Set Succeed and Financial Literacy.
Ready Set Succeed helps new businesses with marketing or operations advice. This year, the team reached out to a new business, Tammy Cakes, and helped the owner create an integrated marketing plan, connect with several business social networking events and helped her gain the confidence to speak with potential new customers. As part of Financial Literacy, the team taught Grade 7 and 8 students from DSBN Academy about budgeting, recycling, volunteering, finding their first job, and building their first resume.
In addition to the competition, which is sponsored by major companies, the event includes a job fair where students have an opportunity to interview for entry-level positions that are rarely posted externally.
While about 30 students are part of NC’s Enactus team, those who will be travelling to Calgary for the Canadian National Exposition include McArthur, Nathan Lodde (incoming president), Diana Lenartowich (director of communications), Katherine Perrin (outgoing vice- president), Brandon Sloan (director of fundraising), Cheria Iranbona (project manager), Renee Benjamin (incoming project manager), and Marco Delanoy (director of business relations).
Students chosen to participate all competed in a regional competition held in Toronto last month.
“These students have dedicated hundreds of hours towards our community projects, allowing them to take what they have learned in the classroom, and use it in real situations,” said McArthur.
NC’s presentation team will be joined in Calgary by their faculty advisor Rob Greene, professor, Business and Entrepreneurship Division. Greene said he was looking forward to the event, where NC’s team competes against teams from colleges and universities from across Canada.
“The competition gives us a chance to show that our students are just as good, if not better,” he said.
NC’s team has returned from Enactus competitions victorious in the past. In 2010, NC won first place at the regional competition. That same year, Greene was honoured with the Faculty Advisor of the Year award for all of Canada.
Greene said NC has participated in Enactus for well over a decade. Over the years he has witnessed how much students benefit from Enactus – formerly called Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE), and Advancing Canadian Entrepreneurship (ACE).
“Students who are a part of Enactus have a chance to help real entrepreneurs, an experience that is valuable to them as graduates,” he said. “It also gives them an opportunity to practice what they learn in class and use their field of expertise.”
As one of those students, McArthur says he enjoys many benefits, including access to an exclusive job bank, and being able to add the experience he has gained to his resume.
“The benefit that you don’t see until you actually work these projects, is how great it feels to help people in your community in need,” he said. “It has been the most rewarding experience for me in college, and has really helped me grow.”
He also believes it will help him pursue his future career. “I have five years of customer service management, and in a recent interview, I was able to relate more to my one year as an Enactus leader, than I was to those five years working for a company,” he said. “That is saying nothing negative about the company that I work for, it just speaks volumes to how much you will learn and grow through Enactus if you put the time into it.”
While many students who participate in Enactus are enrolled in the college’s Business programs, students from all programs are welcome to join the team, which is based out of the NOTL Campus.
Enactus Canada is a community of student, academic and business leaders enabling progress through entrepreneurial action. For information about Enactus Canada visit enactus.ca/