OC Enactus teams take regionals by storm, earn berths to nationals
Okanagan College Media Release
Neither freezing temperatures nor strong competition from some of the top business schools in the west could stop Okanagan College business students as they cruised to four podium finishes at Enactus Western Canada Regionals over the weekend.
During a competition in which no other school was victorious in more than one competition, OC took the top spot in three challenges – the CWB Financial Education Challenge, the Scotiabank Environmental Challenge and the TD Entrepreneurship Challenge. The College also notched a runner-up showing in the Scotiabank Youth Empowerment Challenge.
The College faced teams from 20 other institutions – more than 400 students participated in total – during the two-day event, which took place from Feb. 28 – March 1 in Calgary.
The three winning regionals teams from the College punched their tickets to the Enactus National competition that will be held May 7-9 in Vancouver.
OC’s Entrepreneurship Challenge team, made up of students Isaac Hossmann, Tega Ovie, Sveta Pasko and Jake Pushor presented on Project Recharge, a solar-powered recharging platform designed to help people power up their devices on the go. The team was coached by professors Kyleen Myrah and Lynn Sparling.
For Jake Pushor, who already has the experience of a number of competitions under his belt, Regionals brought the opportunity to take his presentation skills to the next level, all while speaking about a project he’s deeply passionate about.
“The great thing about Project ReCharge is that there are so many viable settings the charging tables can benefit organizations, from the tourism sector to municipalities to schools, and they benefit the environment too. Getting a chance to showcase the project as a team was incredibly rewarding.”
“When you come together as a group and invest so many hours preparing, to come out on top and have all your collaborative efforts recognized is unreal – it’s an amazing feeling,” he adds.
“Once again Enactus OC delivered an exceptional performance highlighting four community projects they have been involved in. Their dedication and leadership are awe-inspiring and the support we get from our OC administration, community partners, donors and alumni really sets us apart. We are very proud to bring home such great results and are looking forward to Nationals in May,” says Myrah.
Vernon’s Abby Lagerquist, Karsten Ensz, Mitchell Vanlerberg and Macy Burke comprised the Environmental or “green” team and were coached by professor Andrew Klingel. They took top spot in their challenge for their presentation on FruitSnaps, a project that utilizes leftover fruit from North Okanagan orchards that otherwise would go to waste to make health snacks for elementary students in SD 22.
Mitchell Folk, Iris Pham, Carmen Larder and Michelle Brouwer proved to be more than just top-notch number crunchers in winning the Financial Education Challenge, buoyed by their coaches – professors Laura Hetherington and Devin Rubadeau. The group presented on the CanSave project, which launched in 2016 and has already helped an impressive number of elementary school students and teachers in B.C. get a head start on financial literacy.
“To put the impact of this program in perspective, it was announced at Regionals that Financial Literacy projects created by Enactus students all over the country had impacted just over 100,000 people in the past seven years. CANsave is responsible for more 33,000 of those 100,000 impacted,” notes Rubadeau.
The College’s Youth Empowerment Team, which earned second place in their challenge included students Nathan Ziebart, Arya Guler, Tyson Thomlinson and Christopher Wadey. They were coached by professors Sheilagh Seaton and Dean Warner and presented on a project called Accelerate Youth which teaches practical skills, like cooking, to at-risk youth.
“We couldn’t be prouder of our students and faculty advisors on their success at Regionals,” says William Gillett, Dean of the School of Business. “Success at these competitions goes beyond skillful performance on the stage as presenters, it more so depends on students’ abilities to devise, launch, lead and adapt projects in our communities that have a tangible positive impact. And it is that wave of positive impact our students are contributing to through Enactus projects, and other efforts beyond the classroom, that is truly inspiring for all of us at the School of Business.”
“Seeing the Enactus OC students work so hard on their community projects and corresponding presentations was so motivating and to see their hard work rewarded with such success is so encouraging. As students we are able to use this experience to learn from industry professionals and develop skills to benefit our community. This opportunity wouldn't be possible without the experience from our alumni and support we get from our community partners, faculty advisers and Okanagan College, they provide an extraordinary footing for our team to depend on and grow from,” said Enactus OC Co-President Jamie Park.
Enactus OC is a student-run organization that has a long history of distinguishing itself in nation-wide competitions for its contributions to entrepreneurship and to the communities it serves.
More information about Enactus and the competition is available at enactus.ca.
Results at a glance:
Entrepreneurship Challenge team
Tega Ovie, Jacob Pushor, Isaac Hossmann and Sveta Pasko
Coach: Kyleen Myrah and Lynn Sparling
1st place (Regional Champion)
Environmental (Green) Challenge team
Abby Lagerquist, Karsten Ensz, Mitchell Vanlerberg and Macy Burke
Coach: Andrew Klingel
1st place (Regional Champion)
Financial Education Challenge (Financial Literacy) team
Mitchell Folk, Iris Pham, Carmen Larder and Michelle Brouwer
Coaches: Devin Rubadeau and Laura Hetherington
1st place (Regional Champion)
Youth Empowerment team
Nathan Ziebart, Arya Guler, Tyson Thomlinson and Christopher Wadey
Coaches: Shei Seaton and Dean Warner
2nd place (Regional Runner-up)
College spotlights new Common First-Year Engineering and other tech programs via virtual info session
June 15, 2020
Future engineers and technologists take note: Okanagan College is opening up a new pathway to engineering next year, and in the meantime is opening students’ eyes to other technologies c...Read more...
May 21, 2020
If there was ever a time to get animated, this was it – albeit with a virtual twist. While COVID-19 may have altered the format for the ceremony, it couldn’t dampen the excitement as stu...Read more...