Young entrepreneurs vie for national awards
For weeks, students from Simon Fraser University’s Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) group have been polishing presentations - efforts they hope will give them an edge at the Advancing Canadian Entrepreneurship (ACE) competition May 9-11 in Toronto.
“We’re feeling confident,” says Kyle Krystalowich, SIFE’s outgoing president, after their final formal practice at SFU Surrey. “The process is really helping us to fine tune our presentations. It’s working well.”
The 30 students will be among 1,000 students from 60 universities competing for a national prize.
SFU SIFE’s own Entrepreneur of the Year, Jordan Gutierrez, is also in the running for national entrepreneur of the year, after being named ACE’s B.C. champion in February and winning a western regional title in March.
Gutierrez is founder and CEO of librerialeo.com.mx, one of the world’s largest online Spanish-language medical bookstores, created to serve rural doctors in his native Mexico.
Meanwhile the SFU student team competing in SIFE’s national contest will deliver a 24-minute presentation on five SFU SIFE projects:
- New Leaf, a program that teaches Grade 7 students about sustainability by helping them to create action plans. That led a class at Burnaby’s Highland elementary school to develop a school-wide composting program;
- Bright Ideas, a program that helps high school students develop entrepreneurial skills, including how to conceive, develop and pitch products;
- Hunger Actions, a relatively new program that engages the low-income community in learning how to secure the most economic and nutritional value from food choices, including input from a dietitian, a live cooking demo and recipe book;
- Student Entrepreneur of the Year program, which provides support for students participating in SFU’s annual contest;
- Banner Bags, a program that turns street banners into fashionable bags and teaches high school students – more than 800 to date – about environmental sustainability.