Four Bahamian secondary students were the recipients of $150,000 in scholarships for their entrepreneurial spirit during the 14th Annual Elmira College Enactus – Sunshine Insurance Essay Contest recently held in Nassau.
Yamille Moss of Aquinas College was crowned this year’s champion for her business plan, winning the $60,000 grand prize scholarship to attend Elmira College. Runners-up Chelsea Tynes of Queen’s College, Matthew Deveaux of Queen’s College, and Michael Miller of Genesis Academy each earned $30,000 in Elmira College scholarships.
The contest, held jointly by the Elmira College Enactus team and Sunshine Insurance in Nassau, Bahamas, has awarded more than $1.6 million in scholarships since its inception during the 2003-04 academic year.
Made possible by the work and generosity of Elmira College trustee Franon Wilson ’97 and his wife Shelly Wilson, the contest calls for Bahamian high school students to submit an essay outlining their idea for a new product or service that could boost the Bahamian economy. The top ten contestants are invited to defend their ideas before a panel of judges in the Sunshine Insurance boardroom with Elmira-based judges participating via live-video conference.
The Wilsons have been involved with the contest since its inception, which was the brainchild of Elmira College Students In Free Enterprise (now known as Enactus) president Brianna Clarke ’03.
Enactus project leaders Spencer Cocca ’17 and Elizabeth Paolucci ’17 facilitated the contest from Elmira. Dr. Robert Irons, Associate Professor of Finance and Enactus advisor, and Mike Rogers, Vice President of External Relations, joined three Bahamian alumnae, Janay Pyfrom-Symonette ’08, Jade Williams Jones ’11, and Errolisa Mcphee ’09 in judging the contest.
“The students competing this year were once again exceptionally bright and full of innovative vision,” said Rogers, who has served as the chief judge of the contest since 2004.
“Elmira College has a wonderful connection to the great nation of the Bahamas with the Wilson family and all of the Bahamian alumni and students who have contributed to its legacy.”
About Enactus: Enactus is an international non-profit organization that brings together student, academic and business leaders who are committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to improve the quality of life and standard of living for people in need. Guided by academic advisors and business experts, the student leaders of Enactus create and implement community empowerment projects around the globe. The experience not only transforms lives, it helps students develop the kind of talent and perspective that are essential to leadership in an ever-more complicated and challenging world.
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