“Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
I think we’ve heard this proverb at least once as children growing up, but as we begin to examine all the problems facing our communities, we can start to see the importance of putting this saying into practice. Enter Enactus, an international organization comprised of students using entrepreneurial action to change the standard of living and quality of life for people in need. As a recently opened chapter, Rutgers Enactus has started with a bang, its students buzzing with ideas to make a difference using the skills they have learned throughout their years at Rutgers.
From the time students enter the Rutgers Business School, there is an overarching pressure to evolve into the ideal “well-rounded” candidate by participating in organizations that demonstrate your leadership, provide community service opportunities, and allow you to partake in networking sessions. Enactus strives to combine all these features into one club. The organization is multi-faceted; it’s rare that you are going to sit through the meetings and never get a chance to do anything. As a new chapter, it’s still brimming with energy to incorporate all the talent and ideas it can find.
Enactus has helped my leadership skills by challenging the status quo every single day. Through extensive research and idea generation all the way to creating a sustainable and profitable business, I guide my team of directors, project managers and members to challenge the status quo. Being one of only two entrepreneurial organizations at Rutgers University, it is our responsibility to ensure that “entrepreneurship” is not a term used lightly. My team has been trained to never stop looking for answers.”-David Kenji Shah, Class 2016
The underlying goal of Enactus is to come up with a sustainable project that helps the community, but also shows quantifiable results. From enabling homeless to generate income by engaging with the community, to developing technology that creates energy and products out of waste, there are a multitude of projects around the world making a mark by improving the community through enduring solutions. The ultimate dream is to compete in nationals with other students around the world presenting their proposals to judges who will choose the best project.
Aside from the leadership and strategic aspects of Enactus, it has also taught me how to problem solve, specifically with developing projects and building relationships with partners like the local farmer’s market. Being a leader in a new organization and figuring out how to create sustainable membership and productive projects for members to work on has forced me to think critically and overcome obstacles.”-Justin Liu, Class of 2017
“The best thing about Enactus is the people. I love how we all bring different ideas to the table and we’re so open to different views on projects and everything.”-Lakshmi Kalluri, Class of 2017
From the moment the Rutgers chapter of Enactus started, there was a distinct vibe that it was going to be special. In the world of business, we are told that one of the most basic principles is to make a profit, so people often don’t make much more of it than that. With Enactus, it’s a chance to combine the passion that business students have to innovate and lead with the power of community service. There is an unbridled fire within a lot of students to make a change, but with Enactus it can finally be turned into a reality.
Good luck to everyone in Enactus with all your future endeavors! I’m sure it won’t be long until we hear the incredible impact you have had not only within the Rutgers community, but also around the world.
By Tulika Sen
Photos provided by Rutgers Enactus