sife team wins competition

Colby-Sawyer College Students in Free Enterprises (SIFE) Team Wins 2009 Regional Competition

The Colby-Sawyer College Chapter of Students in Free Enterprises (SIFE) took first place in their league in this year's Regional SIFE Competition in Warwick, R.I., on March 31. The Colby-Sawyer students edged out student teams from Worcester State College and Franklin Pierce College, with their impressive presentation, complete with video clips of their projects, and rigorous preparation for the event.

Colby-Sawyer's team stood out amongst the other competing Northeastern schools for their accomplishments on their community outreach projects and extremely strong presentation to the panels of business leaders, according to Assistant Professor of Business Administration Jody Murphy, the group's advisor. “I was very proud of their strong presentation and the fact that they didn't use any notes to help them was very impressive to the judges as well,” said Murphy.

This victory for the Colby-Sawyer SIFE team has earned them a spot at the National SIFE Competition in Philadelphia in May 2009. There the students will compete with other teams from around the country for a chance to represent the United States at the SIFE World Cup in Berlin, Germany, in October, in which teams from 41 countries will vie for the world championship.

Vice President of SIFE at Colby-Sawyer Anup Nepal, an international student from Nepal, had a great experience at the regional competition, “Coming from a different country, I found it was a great opportunity presenting in this competition,” he said. “It was great exposure for all of us when we had discussions with executives from different companies and learned different success tips.”

The students who represented Colby-Sawyer in this year's regional competition were Scott Boddy, Pamela Bohanan, Gabrielle Boulay, Katelyn Drouin, Lyndsey Feliciano, P.J. Hammerle, Anup Nepal, Caitlin Putnam, Amber Richardson and Jennifer Sullivan. These students all participated in at least one SIFE project throughout the course of the year and all showed great interest in participating in the regional competition.

“All the members of SIFE this year were great to have on the team,” said Professor Murphy. “Our team doubled in size since last year, and Amber Richardson, our team president, did a great job in leading the group over the last academic year.”

Founded in 1975, SIFE now has 643 teams and 15,398 students participating in the United States and 1,500 worldwide. Each chapter selects members of their group to represent them by regional competitions each year. Thousands of students from various colleges and universities participate in SIFE competitions around the world, in which teams are rewarded for continually improving the quality of their projects and presentations.

SIFE is an international organization whose goal includes increasing students' knowledge of and experience with free enterprise. This year the Colby-Sawyer SIFE chapter, with a total of 19 students, worked on projects to improve their knowledge and skills in areas such as financial literacy, business ethics, market economics, environmental sustainability, success skills, entrepreneurship and international development.

One of the students' most impressive projects this year was in the field of environmental sustainability, on which the students collaborated with Sodexo Dining Services. Called “Bring Your Own Mug,” the project targeted the heavy use of Styrofoam cups in Colby-Sawyer's dining hall. The students distributed 480 reusable mugs, which were donated by Sodexo, to members of the Colby-Sawyer community. The joint SIFE-Sodexo project resulted in a decrease of 1000 disposable cups per week in the dining hall, which they hope will represent both cost-savings for the college and benefits for the environment.

Nine SIFE students from Colby-Sawyer will attend the National SIFE Competition, from May 10 to 12 in Philadelphia to represent the college. The students who plan to compete include Ashley Blais, Scott Boddy, Pamela Bohanan, Gabrielle Boulay, Lyndsey Feliciano, PJ Hammerle, David Martin, Anup Nepal and Amber Richardson.

-Michelle L. Buser '09

Michelle L. Buser is a Communications Studies major and an intern in College Communications at Colby-Sawyer College.