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April 20, 2005
DH 05 PH079
Contact: Pamela Hammond
(310) 243-2001


CSUDH Wins Trophies in Regional Free Enterprise Competition

CARSON, CA: California State University, Dominguez Hills’ newly formed “ToroSifers” competed in the regional Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) competition at the Hyatt Regency in Los Angeles on Thursday, April 14. A panel of 20 business leaders evaluated the student presentations, awarding two trophies to the “ToroSifers” —Rookie of the Year and Second Runner Up in the overall competition. The awards demonstrated the students’ entrepreneurship, enthusiasm and excellence. The team participated in the all-day event in which SIFE teams from 28 universities competed from California, Arizona and Nevada, including USC, Pepperdine, CSU San Luis Obispo and CSU Pomona.

The 2004-05 ToroSifers were Lindsey Jalowy, junior, business management major; Mary Pegler, senior, business administration with emphasis in international business; Mariu Carcovich, senior, interdisciplinary studies; Yelby Ingraham, senior, Spanish; Veronica Gutierrez, junior, business administration; Jamaar Simon, junior, marketing; and Celina Flanagan, junior, business administration. The team members range in age from 21 to 35, represent six different cultural heritages and are residents of the South Bay and South Los Angeles areas.

The CSUDH SIFE team created a mission statement that compliments SIFE USA mission statement and CSUDH President James E. Lyons, Sr.’s view of a “communiversity”, a university that is an integral part of the community. It states “We are devoted to the continual education and inspiration of students and others through the development of free enterprise by dedicating our energy, ideas and knowledge towards the enrichment of the community.”

The CSUDH ToroSifers team was formed and supported by Dr. Kirti Sawhney Celly, CSUDH associate professor of marketing, a Sam Walton Fellow and SIFE faculty advisor at CSUDH. In the annual report for the event, she wrote. “In each one of my classes, students have the opportunity to work on substantial projects. I always encourage my students to work with community organizations, whether they are small businesses, non-profits, schools, churches, or struggling entrepreneurs. Students who accept this challenge are inspiring in their own entrepreneurship. They demonstrate not only their ability to apply the concepts and theory we are learning in the classroom, but also their willingness to take risks, to be accountable and transparent to a “real” audience beyond their professor, and to share their learning with others. The immediate reward is the ‘a-ha’ in the eyes of their audience. SIFE offers me the opportunity to guide these deserving students to share with an even broader audience, and to invest further in community education projects that will make a difference to their own lives and those of others."

The regional competition at the Hyatt Regency is one of 21 SIFE regional competitions held annually across the United States in April. The event sponsor for this regional competition was Sav-On. Other companies, including Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Wells Fargo, Aflac, Petco, & E&J Gallo, supported the event in the form of judges and recruiting booths.

SIFE is a global, non-profit organization on more than 1,800 university campuses in more than 40 countries. SIFE offers students the opportunity to develop leadership, teamwork and communication skills through learning, practicing and teaching the principles of free enterprise. SIFE Teams teach important concepts through educational outreach projects, including market economics, entrepreneurship, personal and financial success, and business ethics to better themselves, their communities and their countries. Each year, SIFE competitions are held worldwide, drawing together thousands of students and business leaders to pay tribute to these extraordinary educational outreach projects.


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Last updated Wednesday, April 20, 4:35 p.m.,
by Joanie Harmon