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SIFE Team Competed in Chicago

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Westminster College Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) participated in the SIFE Northeastern Regional Competition March 28 in Chicago.

Westminster improved on last year's second runner-up position in its division, bringing home first runner-up status.  "Teams are randomly assigned to divisions," explained David Smith, Westminster associate professor of accounting and the group's adviser.  "This year we competed against Chicago University, well-known for its outstanding undergraduate and graduate business programs, as well as the University of Toledo, the University of Missouri, and other quality schools.  That made for some pretty difficult competition."

Westminster SIFE President Chelsea Dean directed the presentation given to a panel of about a dozen judges.  Also making presentations were Vice President Cody Donaldson, Historian Steven LaRue, Public Relations Chair Daniel Matt, Samuel Becherer, Matthew Bickert, Ryan Brucker, Brooke Emmonds, and Brittany Siebart.

Westminster SIFE students who attended in support of the presentation were: Andrew Anthony, Evan Del Bene, Lindsay Drabik, Michael Driscoll, Jessica Dugan, Andrew Edwards, Jonathan Faltot, Morgan Gerlach, Andrew Giallonardo, Chalyn Kaufman, Joshua Masters, Kevin McCarty, Jenna Meighen, Jeff Miller, Melinda Miller, Veronica Pustay, Sydney Serjak, and Steven Totin.  Several other members contributed to the year's activities but were unable to attend.

"SIFE teams take what students have learned in the classroom and in other areas of life, and use this knowledge to create and implement educational outreach projects in their community," Smith said.  "The goal of the projects is to promote financial, economic, and ethical well-being in the community.  Projects capitalize on our members' knowledge and experiences to address issues involving market economics, entrepreneurship, business ethics, environmental sustainability, and the financial skills needed to survive in today's financially demanding world."

The competition format involved team presentations highlighting each team's annual accomplishments.  The Westminster group's community service activities included: presentations to Westminster students and neighboring high schools on financial and job hunting skills; operation of a business consulting firm that completed work for two local businesses, started work with a third, and recruited more for next year; and organization of a stock market competition between teams from local high schools.

In addition to the competition, a career fair provided students with an opportunity to talk with recruiters from a variety of businesses and industries.  According to Smith, several team members in the past have had correspondence or interviews with companies represented at the fair.  Two students recently acquired jobs through these contacts.

The Westminster SIFE team elected officers for the next academic year: Donaldson will serve as president, Giallonardo as vice president, Brucker as treasurer, Becherer as secretary, Matt as historian, and Caitlin Oertly as publicity chair.

The remainder of the current year's activities will involve completion of projects, transitioning responsibility to the new officers, and planning for next year's projects.

Contact Smith at (724) 946-7161 or email smithdc@westminster.edu for additional information.

About Westminster College...
Founded in 1852 and related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Westminster College ranks first in the nation as "Best College for Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math," according to Forbes.com. Westminster is a top tier liberal arts college, a national leader in graduation rate performance, and a "Great School, Great Price," according to U.S. News Best Colleges guide. Westminster ranked 38th among liberal arts colleges, according to the Washington Monthly College Guide, and is one of the most affordable national liberal arts colleges in Pennsylvania. Westminster is also honored as one of "The Best 373 Colleges" and "Best in the Northeast" by The Princeton Review, and is named to the President's Honor Roll for excellence in service learning.

Nearly 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students benefit from individualized attention from dedicated faculty while choosing from 41 majors and nearly 100 organizations on the New Wilmington, Pa., campus. Visit www.westminster.edu/advantage to view "Advantage: Westminster" A Strategic Plan 2010-2020.

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