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SIFE Memorial shines at world cup competition in Kuala Lumpur

The SIFE Memorial team competed for an international title in Malaysia recently.

By Jennifer Kelly

The SIFE team from Memorial University represented Canada on the international stage recently at the 2011 SIFE World Cup in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This event showcased the impact of SIFE teams from 37 countries around the world and united more than 3,000 students, academic professionals and industry leaders.

Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) work with leaders in business and higher education to make a difference in their communities, while also developing the skills to become socially responsible business leaders.

The Memorial team has donated an astonishing 31,000 hours to this mandate all year long and to winning results: at the national competition, the team finished first of 50 other teams to win the Canadian title. Two months prior, they won the regional championship, placing first in all three topic competitions.

At the world cup, the team placed third in its division in the first round of competition, where they competed against the best teams from four other countries. Observers felt the SIFE Memorial projects and their impact were impressive and described their presentation as "flawless." However, it was the teams from Russia and Kenya that advanced to the semi-finals. Despite this, the sense that the team is already a winner is very prominent in Memorial University and the Faculty of Business Administration.

Prof. Lynn Morrissey, the SIFE faculty adviser, emphasized the impact of SIFE's projects is the real winning accomplishment. "More than 6,000 people have been changed by these amazing students. We are committed to continuing our work and making a difference in our communities. That's what matters."

SIFE Memorial is renowned locally and nationally for their achievements in creating stronger, more sustainable communities through the positive power of business. This includes projects such as Based in Business, which gives medically-discharged Canadian Forces members training and mentorship as they develop business plans, and Think Green, a project that helps grade school students become more environmentally conscious. Other SIFE Memorial highlights include Launch Pad, the first and only student business incubator in Canada.

This is just scratching the surface – in total, SIFE has 16 ongoing projects and has generated $2.9 million in economic activity.

"SIFE has made significant change in people's lives and they have made a real difference in our community," said Dr. Wilfred Zerbe, dean, Faculty of Business Administration. "To have represented Canada on the world stage is an amazing achievement and a reflection of the immense contribution, commitment and talents of the team and Lynn."

Making it to the world cup is an achievement that no other SIFE team in Canada has done, and it's something Dr. Zerbe is immensely proud of. "We should all be extremely proud of how SIFE Memorial represented Canada and our province. To repeat the final words of the team's presentation: SIFE is empowering, inspiring and life changing, but most importantly, it is real."