Published 10/30/17

Some of the Bryant Enactus team presenting at national conference

Some of the Bryant Enactus presenters at the May 2017 national expo.

Bryant Enactus works to build sustainable change

At a recent national competition, Bryant Enactus, the university’s social entrepreneurship student organization, presented their ideas for changing the world and shared how they’re doing.

“I want to be making a difference,” says Bryant Enactus President Shelby Gault ’18, “and Enactus gives us an outlet to maximize the good that we can do.”

 "Enactus gives us an outlet to maximize the good that we can do."

Enactus – the name combines the words “entrepreneurial,” “action,” and “us” – is an international organization that inspires college students around the world to solve big problems in sustainable and entrepreneurial ways. Enactus competitions allow members to share their plans – and their results.

In 2016-17, Bryant Enactus members spent nearly 600 hours planning, operating and evaluating several different projects and initiatives. One of the group’s newest, “Beyond Beads,” involves teaching people who are homeless how to design, create, and sell jewelry made from recyclable materials. Another, still in the planning stages, involves building a pipeline to supply soap collected from the overstock of spas, hotels, and chain stores to those in need.

The efforts can make a big difference, notes Gault, pointing to the club’s Money Matters initiative, which collaborated with The Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy to pass legislation requiring Rhode Island schools to offer financial literacy courses. The club also frequently works directly with companies like Santander and CVS.

The lessons Enactus members use, such as making and executing a business plan and effectively presenting results and ideas, tie directly into what they learn in their Bryant classes. The club also offers workshops to help members develop planning, presenting, interviewing, and networking skills, drawing on Bryant faculty and local business people as mentors. 

“Our Bryant education gives us such a leg up,” says Gault. “We’re competing against so many great teams, and we can see how well Bryant actually prepares you for competitions and for the business world.”