March 6, 2007

Jennifer Tanner
Communications Specialist

Charles Harmon Director of University Relations, Edtwon A. Myree Student Assistant, Dr. L. Wayne Plumly Jr. 229-245-3825

SIFE stands on top after the duel

The Valdosta State University Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) team continues to impress as the non-profit organization captured the first place prize in the “Duel in the Desert” a national competition on March 3, in Tucson, Ariz.

The University of Arizona Take Charge America Institute along with SIFE at the University of Arizona hosted the 5th annual personal finance case study competition. VSU’s team consisted of Daniel Housley, Nadia Rajjoub, Stephanie Spencer, and Jason Swinford. These four competed against teams from universities around the country. Universities in the competition included Boston College, California State University, Pepperdine University, Purdue University, Syracuse University, and University of Wisconsin amongst others.

The Duel in the Desert is the only competition of its kind in the nation. Participants were given a hypothetical case study about the financial distress of a family. Students were then given 36 hours to come up with a solution to the problem based on the family’s situation, economics, geography, and resources. They then presented their results to a panel of 30 judges.

In addition to being awarded the first place prize SIFE members received a trophy and $4,000.

To qualify, twelve SIFE teams from across the country hosted similar regional events that followed the guidelines provided by the University of Arizona SIFE chapter. VSU’s host event was called the Duel in the Swamp. Winners of the regional competitions and their host schools then vied for national honor. Take Charge America, a non-profit national consumer credit counseling company, based in Phoenix, Ariz. sponsored these twelve regional competitions and the national Duel in the Desert. More than $127,000 in prize money was awarded to more than 70 universities and 400 SIFE student competitors.

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