Enactus program receives prestigious awards 


Left to Right: Steven Norman, Conner Kramer, Mikayla Miller, Chase Brookshear and Alex Shelley.

The Enactus team at Indiana University East is having a banner year, polishing off the spring 2016 semester with a trio of prestigious awards at the program’s national convention.

“We’re having the best year in our 10-year history, winning awards beyond our expectations,” said Tim Scales, faculty advisor for Enactus and a senior lecturer for the School of Business and Economics.

Scales and team member Nathan Crowe attended the convention in St. Louis, May 15-17. Enactus is a student special interest group focusing on entrepreneurship.

“Working with students is one of the most rewarding things I could ever imagine. I have watched students learn and develop from young, intuitive people to becoming young professionals. It is truly an honor to be part of these young professional’s lives,” Scales said.

The three programs that received awards include:

The CVC Award for Youth Entrepreneurship. Sponsored by CVC Capital Partners, one of the world’s leading private equity and investment advisory firms. As second place winners they received $3,500 and a trophy. The project manager was Scales. The award was given to the BOSS (Business Opportunities for Self Starters) Program at IU East. BOSS was designed and implemented by Scales, in conjunction with the state of Indiana, it was originally envisioned as a two-year program to teach entrepreneurship to 160 high school students, and enable them to develop a business plan.

Now beginning its 11th year, it has been adopted and implemented by 24 other states, as well as the countries of India, Mexico, South Africa, and Tunisia. Over 3,000 students have completed the program to date. Examples of businesses started by BOSS alumni include Diamond Outdoor Solutions, in Hartford City, Ind., New Boswell Brewing Company in the Richmond Depot District and Peter’s Guitars in Henry County.

Sam’s Club “Step Up for Small Business” Program. Sponsored by Sam’s Club. As one of 10 finalists, the chapter will receive $1,000 and a plaque. Their partner in the program, Roscoe’s Coffee Bar and Tap Room, will receive $2,000 and a plaque. Steve Norman, a business major from Bloomington, Ind., was project manager.

For this project, the team asked local banks to come on the local television show, “In Your Business”, on WCTV and hosted by Scales. Six banks visited the show to discuss what they have to offer to small businesses. The bank representatives also provided literature on the subject. Enactus team members packaged the literature with “In Your Business Enactus” coffee mugs and hand-delivered the packages to 100 local businesses.

The team then selected one business, Roscoe’s Coffee Bar and Tap Room, to be their partner. All 100 businesses, and all six banks, were then invited to participate in six events at Roscoe’s, bringing Richmond’s small business community together with the financial sector to promote healthy, profitable, economic relationships between the two. A seventh, final event was held at the Square Donuts east-side location.

The AIG “For the Health of It” Program. Sponsored by American International Group. As one of five teams selected for this program, IU East’s Enactus team will receive $3,500 seed money for their project and a plaque. IU East Enactus member and Purdue Polytechnic of Richmond sophomore Nathan Crowe, a mechanical engineering technology major from Fountain City, Ind., was the project manager.

AIG solicited proposals, regarding wearable technology, from 586 Enactus chapters. IU East was one of five selected for the program. Their proposal relates to the “Darma” Seat Cushion, a brand-new, cutting-edge piece of wearable technology. A two-millimeter thick cushion, it has sensors that monitor the user’s posture, heart-rate, blood pressure, sitting time, respiration, and stress levels. It communicates with a Smartphone, letting the user know when it’s time to get up and move around, suggests stretches to relieve muscles, breathing exercises, and offers posture advice. The proposal goal is to have 100 people from various industries experience the Darma, and collect feedback from them. AIG will assign a “wearable” technologies expert to assist the team with their project.

Although small (the Enactus program at IU East currently boasts 10 active members) it is extremely active. In addition to the three award-winning programs, the team has also managed two more projects in the last year:

Wal-Mart’s “Empowering Women” Program. The team, in conjunction with the Indiana state workforce development program, WorkOne, developed and conducted a reverse job fair. The project manager for this program was Alex Shelley, from Avon, Ind., a sophomore pursuing a business degree.

They assisted 27 work-seeking individuals with honing their soft skills; communications, resume building, self-esteem, and presentation. Each individual was given booth space at the fair, and the team helped them to create displays showcasing their various skills and experience. Thirty-two local businesses then participated, visiting the prospective employee’s booths. Due to state privacy regulations, no information is available on the results, but Scales feels confident that the project was a positive experience for both employers and aspiring employees.

ADP, a payroll and human relations services company, sponsored the team’s veteran’s project. The focus of the project is to work with veterans, public servants, and others who have worked in the public interest in transitioning into entrepreneurship. It featured twenty such individuals in personalized copies of Scale’s book, The Two-Hour Entrepreneur. A brunch was held to honor the chosen individuals and their families.

Honorees included Jerry Purcell, City of Richmond Fire Chief with 32 years of service; Patrick Chimenti, a social worker and Behavioral Health Coordinator of IU East’s Center for Health Promotion who has worked with many service members to prepare for deployment; and Walt Sieb, who owned Esmond Shoes, a Richmond family-owned shoe store for over 35 years. The personalized books are currently on display at the IU East Center for Entrepreneurship, located in Hayes Hall.

The team also worked side-by-side with two of the 20, as they established their businesses; Mike Widau, new co-owner of Roscoe’s Coffee Bar and Tap Room, and Tim Cox, of EcocountertopsUSA.

The team is also building a database of local entrepreneurship.

“The neat thing is as we build this database, they serve as mentors for other entrepreneurs,” Scales said. This program “recognizes those who have done, and inspires those who will do,” he added.

The plan is to work with two new aspiring entrepreneurs each month. Junior Makayla Miller, a business major from Greenville, Ohio, will lead this program as project manager.

“Being part of Enactus is an exceptional way for students to gain experience, well beyond what’s available in the classroom,” Scales said. “They get hands-on opportunities to develop a network with individuals in the community, the region, and around the world.”

About Enactus:
A community of student, academic and business leaders committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better more sustainable world.

entrepreneurial—having the perspective to see an opportunity and the talent to create value from that opportunity;
action—the willingness to do something and the commitment to see it through even when the outcome is not guaranteed;
us—a group of people who see themselves connected in some important way; individuals that are part of a greater whole.

There are 68,000 members of Enactus, in 34 countries world-wide, with 48,000 in the U.S.A.