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Arkansas Tech SIFE Wins Regional Title

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Arkansas Tech University has earned a regional championship in Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) competition for the fifth time since 2003.

The Arkansas Tech SIFE team was named a 2011 regional champion following competition at the SIFE USA Regional Competition in Dallas, Texas, on Friday, March 18.

SIFE is an international non-profit organization that engages students on 1,500 college campuses around the world in projects that, according to the organization, "create a better, more sustainable world through the positive power of business."

This year marks the third time in the last four years that Arkansas Tech has earned a SIFE regional title.

Arkansas Tech's SIFE team won the championship based on a presentation concerning its public service projects throughout the current academic year.

"SIFE members at Arkansas Tech University care about their campus and the Russellville community," said Dr. Linda Bean, associate professor of management and marketing at Arkansas Tech and Sam M. Walton Fellow for the Arkansas Tech SIFE team. "This caring has been demonstrated in the projects they have completed this year."

The Arkansas Tech SIFE team participated in nine community service projects during the 2010-11 academic year.

One of the most successful programs the group initiated this year was "Let's Can Hunger." The project consisted of 11 food drives that collected more than 7,500 pounds of food for Main Street Mission in Russellville.

"The goal (of SIFE team members) is to help others," said Bean. "At the same time, the students are developing strong leadership and teamwork skills. I am very proud of the work they have done together this year. This is a group of students that will be successful in school and in life."

Lydia Grate of Atkins is serving as president of the Arkansas Tech SIFE organization in 2010-11.

"This organization has helped me grow as a student, worker and as a person," said Grate. "I have gained so many real world experiences by being a part of SIFE."

Other students who represented Arkansas Tech in the SIFE regional competition included Brent Armstrong of Benton, Rebecca Bartlett of Lamar, Kristen Buser of Cabot, Kelsey Coulter of Russellville, Lindsey Falkenstein of Pea Ridge, Maggie Good of Alpena, Miranda Gregory of Canehill, Rebecca Hahn of Russellville, Keyvan Sierra of Hempstead, N.Y., Amanda Smith of Romance, Amanda Sparks of Berryville, Erin Taylor of Rogers, Jenn Terrell of Wickes, Cheyenne Walls of Mena and Mami Yuasa of Sera-gun, Japan.

As a regional champion, Arkansas Tech will advance to the 2011 SIFE USA National Exposition in Minneapolis, Minn., May 10-12. One national champion at that event will advance to the SIFE World Cup in Malaysia Oct. 3-5.