JBU Enactus Hosts World Trade Expo for Middle School Students

SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. (November 7, 2012) — The 21st Annual World Trade Expo, hosted by John Brown University Enactus (formerly Students in Free Enterprise or SIFE) will be held Friday, Nov. 9, at the men’s Dillard’s wing at the Northwest Arkansas Mall. The entrepreneurship education program and middle school business plan competition give middle school students the opportunity to test their skills as they promote their businesses.

Nearly 100 students, dressed in professional attire, from eight Northwest Arkansas schools will set up booths and vend their products from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. At 3:30 p.m., students will complete in the elevator pitch competition in the food court area of the mall.

Sponsoring middle school teachers deliver an entrepreneurship curriculum and students organize into teams to write business plans around original product ideas—from homemade fashion accessories to handcrafted picture frames. Teams then submit their business plans to JBU Enactus for evaluation. The top 30 plans earn an invitation to the Northwest Arkansas Mall in Fayetteville where they open a booth for a day of business, pitching their products to potential customers.

JBU Enactus organizes the Expo to give young students an opportunity to apply the basic principles of business, marketing, environmental sustainability and ethics that they have learned over the course of the semester.

In addition to classroom instruction, students attended seminars at JBU throughout the semester to learn basic business principles and how to create a business plan for a new product.

Cash prizes will be awarded for the top three teams in Best Business Plans, Best Booth Displays and Best Environmentally Sustainable Businesses.

John Brown University is a private Christian university, ranked No. 2 overall and No. 1 Best Value among Southern regional colleges by U.S. News & World Report and listed as one of America’s Best Colleges by Forbes. JBU enrolls more than 2,200 students from 40 states and 39 countries in its traditional undergraduate, graduate, degree completion and concurrent education programs. JBU is a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities and a founding member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.