TAMIU SIFE Team Gets National Honor in Competition

TAMIU SIFE Students Get Top Rookie Honors
at National Competition

Texas A&M International University's Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) team earned the national  "Rookie of the Year" Award at the SIFE USA National Exposition, May 22-24 in Kansas City, Missouri.

The group previously won Regional Champion honors at the SIFE USA Regional Competition in Dallas in April. That win allowed them to advance to the National competition.

The Team's academic advisor, Dr. J. Michael Patrick, who accompanied the group, said Laredo and TAMIU were well-represented by the 7-member team.

"This is tremendous national visibility for Laredo and TAMIU and truly showcases our students, our university and community. These students did an outstanding job in competing against programs that are repeat champions, many of whom have been participating in these competitions for over 20 years. Our seven-member TAMIU SIFE team did an incredible job and Laredo can be justly proud of them," Dr. Patrick said.

TAMIU SIFE Team members include Triana Cisneros, president; Gabriela Ayala, vice president; Celina Arambula, secretary; Rosario Ibanez, treasurer; Grace Gabala, project coordinator; Jose Baez, public relations officer; and Juan de Dios Nieto, project coordinator.

The group is only in its first year of organization. During the academic year, it completed five projects and organized five more for completion this summer in the Laredo community.

SIFE Teams create economic opportunities in their communities by organizing outreach projects that teach market economics, entrepreneurship, personal financial success skills and business ethics. The resulting projects are judged at competition on creativity, innovation and effectiveness.

SIFE had modest beginnings in Texas where the National Leadership Institute's Robert T. "Sonny" Davis, a Texas attorney, founded it in 1975.

It has since grown to become an international non-profit organization active on over 1800 university campuses in more than 40 countries. Guided by faculty advisors who are named Sam M. Walton Free Enterprise Fellows in honor of the late Wal-Mart founder, SIFE Teams establish a variety of community outreach programs that teach free enterprise.

For additional information, contact Dr. Patrick at 956-326-2547, e-mail jmpatrick@tamiu.edu or visit offices in the Western Hemispheric Trade Center 221.

For more information on SIFE, visit sife.org.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu