Looking to connect his study abroad experiences in Taiwan with his education at Truman, junior Michael Fentress kept in contact with a Taiwanese organization that allows him to promote knowledge of international business tactics.
While in Taiwan, Fentress met Luke Lin, founder of My World Connect, a non-profit organization that seeks to further the learning of the English language. As a member of Truman Enactus, Fentress saw potential for collaboration between the two organizations dedicated to making positive social changes. Lin helped Enactus network with different schools in Taiwan and ultimately form the ConnectTaiwan project.
The program takes a three-pronged approach to teaching business practices that can be implemented in both the U.S. and Taiwan. First, the students are given a lesson in class that they work through with their teachers. Then they view a video put together by Truman Enactus offering a different way to view the same lesson. Finally, students are broken into small groups where they work one-on-one with an Enactus member over Skype to clear up any questions.
The project culminates with each small group presenting at a community fair in July, where they pitch an idea for a new business and the strategies they would use to sell a product or service.
While the planning stage for this project began in August 2013, Enactus started implementing the lessons and small group work in January 2014. According to senior Ashley Lynch, ConnectTaiwan has been a huge hit with the students of Changsing Junior High School.
“We have witnessed an overwhelming reaction from the students with this program,” Lynch said. “It amazes me how excited and eager the students are to commit to this program in addition to their current school workload.”