Colleen Bennett - Sotheby's International Realty

Students for Free Enterprise in La Verne Show Capitalism Is in Good Hands … by Larry Stewart

May 12, 2012
Share this story:
Dr. Issam Ghazzawi and Sowing Seeds for Life CEO Vicki Brown are sowing the seeds of free enterprise in the eastern San Gabriel Valley.

Dr. Issam Ghazzawi and Sowing Seeds for Life CEO Vicki Brown are sowing the seeds of free enterprise in the eastern San Gabriel Valley.

Evidence that the future of our world is in good hands is SIFE, which stands for Students in Free Enterprise.

SIFE brings together a diverse network of university students, academic professionals and industry leaders around the shared mission of creating a better, more sustainable world through the positive power of business.

Taste of Asia La Verne

SIFE has a presence in more than 1,500 universities in some 40 countries, including 800 in the U.S. The University of La Verne has a strong SIFE program, headed by Dr. Issam Ghazzawi, an associate professor of business management. La Verne’s SIFE team consists of some 40 students.

One reason the La Verne program is so strong is community support. To recognize that support, the La Verne SIFE team held an event on campus May 4 to present awards to many of its supporters in addition to celebrating a recent regional championship.

One of the awards went to Sowing Seeds for Life, the La Verne-based food bank that serves some 6,000 needy people per month in the East San Gabriel. Another went to Vicki Brown, the CEO of Sowing Seeds for Life (SSFL).

La Verne SIFE students and SSFL have teamed up on a number of charitable projects.

An example of that came on a rainy day earlier this year when SIFE students, accompanied by two professors, showed up at DPI Labs at 1350 Arrow Highway, where SSFL conducts its food giveaways twice a month.

The students were there to help in any way they could. But their main purpose was offering business advice to the people there in need, most of who are currently unemployed. It could be as simple as offering advice on how to fill out a résumé, or offering advice on how to handle a job interview.

“Our students are helping and learning at the same time,” said Dr. Ghazzawi, who was joined that day by another SIFE advisor, law and economics professor Kevin Marshall.

“These kids are just tremendous,” Brown said at the time. “For them to come out on a rainy day and try and help people in need has to restore our faith in today’s young people.”

Other SIFE honorees at  the May 4 awards ceremony included PepsiCo, Sam’s Club, the Campbell Soup Company, the North America Trade Agreement, the Lions and Rotary Clubs of Pomona and state assembly member Norma Torres.

Leave a Reply