Enactus team to compete in national competition

Carly Mathews

The WKU Enactus Team will be heading to the 2016 Enactus National Exposition after receiving honors this past weekend at the regional competition in Atlanta.

Enactus is a global entrepreneurship program and the world’s largest student organization. There are 1,500 teams worldwide with 500 in the United States.

WKU’s team won a top-three ranking by presenting their three distinct projects to a panel of 15 judges.

The presentation consisted of a 17 minute presentation with five minutes for a question and answer portion.

The presentation team consisted of Kendall Allen, Ryan Purk, Adabella Nunez and Grant Shepherd, and they were sponsored by the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Gordon Ford College of Business.

The team’s projects consisted of a change in the Kentucky state learner’s permit written exam to allow Burmese refugees to hear a translation into their native language, the connection of dental health students to prospective patients to help lower the rates of dental disease in Kentucky, and project Adelante.

Adelante helped empower Hispanic entrepreneurs in Bowling Green by offering consultations, marketing help and translation of a 26-page business manual that is now being distributed across the state. The project has also helped create four new businesses and has enabled $125,000 in new payroll.

The projects are worked on by team members for the whole year and are judged on the sustainable impact they have on the community or global level.

The faculty advisor for the WKU Enactus Team, Krist Schell, says this year’s team has been wonderfully creative and hardworking, which shows in its success.

“It’s been such an honor to watch them progress and build their skills that will continue to help them in their future entrepreneurial skills,” Schell said.

In addition to winning big at the competition, two team members were also offered full-time jobs by Wal-Mart.

“I think our reputation for dedication towards the Enactus mission was definitely a part of that,” Schell said.

The WKU team believes part of its success comes from its dedication to working as a team both on and off the competition stage.

“Most other teams work as individuals, and they go do their own thing once the presentation portion is over,” Kendall Allen, the team’s chief executive officer, said. “We stay as a team the whole time, and I think it shows whenever we’re presenting how in sync we all are.”

Not only does Enactus teach entrepreneurial and business skills, but for Allen, it has also been a safe place for her confidence and a place to share her ideas.

“Enactus is a place where my ideas are heard and valued, and that’s allowed me to become more confident and outspoken,” Allen said. “The organization is a way for me and my team to empower the community and a way to serve and help others in a completely unique way.”

Ed. note: A previous version of this article misspelled Ryan Purk’s name. That error has been corrected. The Herald regrets the error.