FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACTS:
Karen Beiser, associate professor of business administration and economics, 406.657.1170, Karen.beiser@rocky.edu
Andrew Keating, director of communications, 406.657.1104, andrew.keating@rocky.edu

Photo credit: Photo of the RMC Enactus Team at regionals (left to right): Kenny Roberts, Erin Barklage, Zach Pietrocarlo, Tymber States, Thomas Vandel, Hope Bradley, Tessa Fraser, Hailey Fish, and Blake Sweet (team member not pictured, Tayler Noble).

RMC’s Enactus team heads to nationals for two projectsenactus

BILLINGS, May 10, 2016 – With a successful presentation at regionals on April 18, 2016, in Bentonvillle, Arkansas, the RMC Enactus team qualified to head to the national competition.

Nine members of the RMC Enactus team leave on May 15, 2016, to present their global impact presentation during the National Enactus Competition in St. Louis, Mo. They will be competing with more than 400 other Enactus teams from throughout the United States – many of which have more than 10 times as many members. The final competition will run through May 17.

“This year's team really took it to the next level,” said Dr. Karen Beiser, the advisor for the Enactus team and also RMC’s Associate Professor of Business. “They have already done an amazing job, and I am so proud of them.”

RMC’s Enactus President Tymber States said, “We have several projects that we work on. Two are within our small community on campus with Rocky students and two more are working with our larger Billings' community. All of our projects allow us to apply our scholastic knowledge while helping others and bettering their lives.”

For this year’s competition, RMC’s Enactus team will present two of their four projects. The first is Workforce Women, which is a workforce education program sponsored by the Walmart Foundation, aimed to empower female criminal offenders as they return to the community. The intent is not only to teach the women valuable economic skills, but to also break the vicious social cycle of criminal activity and incarceration.

Workforce Women is in its third year and, as in years past, the Enactus team partnered with Passages, a pre-release center serving the Montana Women’s Prison. Last year, 56 women completed the Enactus workshop. During this academic year, the Workforce Women project reached 70 women in the Alcohol and Drug Treatment Center at Passages. Of these 70 women, 44 have since moved to pre-release and are allowed to leave the facility to search for employment. Of those, 31 have found employment, 29 in the first 30 days alone. These women now earn an average pay of $9.17 per hour, and over the next year the combined potential income of this group of women will surpass $591,000.

For this year’s project, the RMC Enactus team finalized a “Train the Trainer” manual for the Workforce Women program. This manual includes everything needed to recreate the Workforce Women program at any correctional facility nationwide.

The second project the Enactus team will be presenting is their newest project called Broken Glass to Working Class. The goal of this project is to employ homeless individuals in our community and divert glass waste from landfill. To do this the Enactus Team created a unique, up-cycled, glass product that helps to create positive change in the community.

According to the Enactus team, there is more than 48,000 tons of glass waste being sent to landfills in Montana, and more than 600 homeless individuals residing in Billings. Through donations and a partnership with a local recycling pick-up company, Earth First Aid, the Enactus team has diverted over 600 pounds of glass from entering landfills. The projects first employee has already earned his first two paychecks.

Broken Glass to Working Class aims to hire 3 to 4 additional employees, giving homeless individuals the opportunity to earn a consistent income of $322 per month.

“I particularly love working on our two projects,” added States, “Broken Glass to Working Class and Workforce Women, where we have the chance to be involved with people in our community who may need a second chance. Its incredibly rewarding seeing the positive impact we are having working with them. As president, I also enjoy seeing my team working with these individuals and how it changes many of their perspectives on social issues in our community."

The student-led RMC Enactus team is just one of 533 schools in the U.S. that work with the Enactus international organization. Enactus teams are making some powerful changes in the business community by creating, developing, and implementing projects that empower people in the community. 

Dr. Beiser explained how the Enactus program offers students the opportunity to develop leadership skills, connect with business professionals, and build experience in project management, while also providing a way for students to make an impact in the local community. Dr. Beiser also noted that the Enactus team received a $1,500 grant from Enterprise to assist with travel expenses.

Currently, the RMC Enactus team has two other projects they are working on:

  • Rock Slam, in which RMC participants are equipped with the resources to make sound economic financial decisions
  • Suit Up!, which has allowed students professional clothing that they could not otherwise afford.

“The Rocky Mountain College Enactus team is excited to be heading to the Enactus National Exposition in St. Louis this year,” said States. “Competing allows us to demonstrate our skills that led us to helping our community and the impact we have. Being able to travel to these competitions also gives the students an opportunity to expand and grow through new career options on display at the career fairs, mingling with other teams, and meeting professionals in the business world. We have many new members who were able to experience their first Enactus competition in April at Regionals in Arkansas. After Regionals, the team is pumped to continue to compete at the National competition.”

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