Business students from American International College received an honorable mention award at the regional Enactus business conference in New York, and an invitation to the national conference in Kansas City. Professors John Rogers and Michael Jiles accompanied the students to the event, where they competed against the top schools in the Northeast. AIC was first runner up in the League 5 category.

Enactus is the largest organization in the world dedicated to student entrepreneurship and service learning.

The competition process begins with a series of Regional Competitions held each year in March and April in cities across the nation. From the regional events top teams gain the opportunity to advance to the National Exposition competition held in May. After three days of activities progressing through the opening, semi-final and final rounds of competitions, one team will be named the Enactus United States National Champion and be invited to represent the United States at the Enactus World Cup.

The AIC students attending the conference included Springfield residents Jeffery Hyde, Nicole Taylor and Chukwubuiken Ekweme, as well as Alex Morse of Hampden and Lydia Yohannes of Leominster.

Hyde is a senior majoring in general business, Taylor is a junior, majoring in sport and recreation management; Ekweme is a senior, majoring in management; Morse is a senior majoring in general business; and Yohannes is a junior majoring in management.

The five members of the AIC team made a formal presentation on projects that they have managed during the past year. All were designed around Enactus criteria of entrepreneurship and business expertise as engines of community service and community improvement.

Projects included a community center and Internet café in the Mason Square area of Springfield; fund-raisers for an electronic stock trading room in Amaron Hall and associated initiatives in financial literacy directed at both AIC students and the surrounding community; and mentoring of students at Springfield high schools.

Rogers said in addition to presenting before a panel of corporate judges and business advisors, this event gave the students a chance to interact with over 500 colleagues from around the Northeast and to meet with recruiters from firms such as Unilever, Stanley Tool, Mondelez International, Home Depot, and Pepsi. "Being a part of Enactus opens students to a rich source of internship opportunities and job leads, as well as providing a great venue for honing networking skills," he said.