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Vol 39  No 3
Sept. 21, 2006


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ACE Memorial makes it to semifinals in global competition

by Meaghan Whelan

ACE Memorial, a group of young entrepreneurs, recently represented Canada in the SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise) World Cup in Paris, France. The SIFE World Cup is an annual event that brings together young entrepreneurs from around the globe. The best teams from 45 different countries travelled to Paris Sept. 11-14 to showcase the projects they have worked on in the past year. Getting to the World Cup is no easy feat ­ a total of 1,800 teams competed worldwide for the opportunity to represent their countries.

The ACE Memorial team made it successfully past the first round, beating teams from Germany, Botswana, Kyrgyzstan and China. Dr. Gary Gorman, who accompanied the team to France, described their presentation as “flawless.”

The president of ACE Canada, David Henderson said, “We are thrilled to support Memorial University of Newfoundland. The team has shown sheer determination and risen to the challenge with a heavy hitting presentation.”

In the semi-finals against Mexico, the Philippines and China, ACE Memorial was edged out by China, who emerged as the overall winner of the World Cup.

The competition was judged by global business leaders who based their decisions on the impact projects had on their community. One Canadian CEO who acted as a judge in the World Cup had this to say about ACE Memorial’s showing: “As I have lived and travelled around the world, I have spent a lot of time being a very proud Canadian. I have never been more proud and it brings tears to my eyes even now, as I reflect on the spirit, commitment, hard work, team unity and ‘funability’ that was demonstrated by the ‘Team from the Rock’ in Paris. By my reckoning, you have at least as many as three or four budding prime ministerial candidates, or perhaps a John Crosbie, amongst your numbers.”

Although the focus of the World Cup may seem to be the competition and the presentations, the true core is the programs that help communities. In the past year, ACE Memorial created and delivered 21 programs that helped their community and beyond. With 4,937 volunteer hours, members were able to help 2,061 people in 12 countries. One project, Project Passport, helped new Canadians learn how to succeed in business. Workshops helped develop skills such as accounting and business plan writing, and resume and interview techniques. Since the sessions, government and enterprise support organizations have partnered with the participants to begin developing their business ideas.

The team that went to Paris were just a small group of ACE Memorial members. Over 60 students participate in the program and they are always looking for new members.

“Right now a lot of our members come from the Faculty of Business, but all students are welcome,” explained Andrew Crocker, a member of the ACE Memorial executive team who competed in the World Cup. “There are a lot of very different projects, so students have the ability to help people in their own interest areas.”

There are a lot of reasons to get involved with ACE Memorial. The projects get students into the community helping others and applying knowledge gained in the classroom. ACE members learn hands-on about management, public speaking and leadership. There are many travel opportunities for active members and members also benefit from contact with the local business community.

Students who are interested in joining ACE Memorial can learn more by visiting www.acememorial.com or e-mailing info@acememorial.com.

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