The Indiana University East Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) team competed in its first national competition held May 11-13 in Minneapolis, Minn.
“As our first trip to the National competition, finishing in the top 100 out of 800 teams worldwide is a very impressive accomplishment for IU East SIFE,” said Tim Scales, lecturer of business and director of the Center for Entrepreneurship, and the team’s advisor. “I’m confident we’ll be back to the national competition next year. Our goal will be to make the top 20,” Scales said.
The IU East team had won its league during the SIFE United States Regional Competition Exposition held April 8 in Chicago to advance to the national event. SIFE is a nonprofit organization that gives students the tools to learn the free enterprise system in a real working situation. SIFE challenges students on more than 800 college campuses nationwide to take what they’re learning in the classroom and use their knowledge to better their communities.
IU East students on the team are James Healton of Centerville, Ind., Morgan Imhoff of Richmond, Ind., Chelsy Ozbun of Lynn, Ind., and Blake Pieratt of Eaton, Ohio. The team worked throughout the year on projects related to teaching financial literacy concepts in the community to present at the competition.
While at the competition, students had a unique opportunity to meet and talk with CEOs of large corporations during the “Top to the Future Forum.” During this time, a small group of students from different universities, met with the CEOS to discuss a topic.
Pieratt said the experience provided the opportunity to talk with a “big wig” about today’s technologies and the effects on the marketing.
“This was just a great learning experience to interact with CEOs. Students were teaching CEOs about modern technologies and how it affects their business and how we view their business through these tools,” Pieratt said.
Pieratt, a business administration major with a minor in entrepreneurship, also had the chance to participate in the opening ceremony for the national competition during the “Rally of Champions.” He carried the IU East banner to represent the university. Students were encouraged to celebrate the honor. Pieratt danced his way across the stage.
“I’ve never had that type of experience to be able to interact with other students (backstage) while at the competition and to discuss our projects. It was just a real neat experience,” Pieratt said.
For more information, contact the School of Business and Economics, at (765) 973-8343.