WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Dec. 12, 2016 — College is a time to work hard, learn and take first steps toward a future career. For one West Liberty University senior, Lindsey Fenwick, that meant starting the first chapter of Net Impact in the state of West Virginia.
“I am so proud of Lindsey. She’s a wonderful example of one of our students doing something very exciting on campus while representing WLU on a larger scale,” said Vishakha Maskey, associate professor of economics and management in the West College of Business and faculty advisor for the new student group.
“The Net Impact group is for everyone too, not just business students,” Maskey added.
A global community of students and professionals, Net Impact members seek to become the most effective change agents they can be, according to the website, NetImpact.org.
“I found out about Net Impact in Professor Maskey’s social entrepreneurship class and I liked everything about it since the group doesn’t just focus on money but on giving back and creating positive social change. Plus my father is an entrepreneur so I knew about start-ups,” said Fenwick, who also is a student athlete playing shooting guard on the basketball team and catcher for the softball team.
Social entrepreneurship entails using business skills to address social problems while making money.
Her father, a professional firefighter, started a business that allows emergency workers easier access to homes during emergencies. Net Impact programs range from social impact, environmental protection, new product creation, and orienting businesses towards the greater good.
“The Net Impact group provided me with many tools that I can use in any field that I go into after graduation. I also received funding to go to the national conference that was totally paid for. We got to listen to business CEOs of Walmart, Etsy and other big companies and national leaders,” she said. The conference took place Nov. 3 – 5 in Philadelphia.
“I’m want to build the WLU student chapter and get the word out that this group is great for so many students so I’m looking for other passionate members to continue the group, since I graduate in May,” she added.
Recently, she sponsored a National Debt Bingo, to educate students about the impact of the growing national debt that was sponsored by the Net Impact subgroup, Up To Us, that gets college students involved in thinking about reducing the national debt.
“It’s also a competition. Fifty-three other students were at the national conference and we trained for Up to Us to educate students on the national debt and help us understand the importance of the financial world that will affect all college students in the future. We also gathered signatures to share with our government officials to make more of an impact. It was a successful event,” she said. Up to Us is designed to inspire action among millennials, the generation most impacted by the nation’s long-term fiscal and economic health, according to its website.
If the WLU national debt signature event places in the top 20 college Up to Us competitions, Fenwick will next get to attend the Clinton Global Initiative University, an annual meeting where students, university representatives, topic experts, and celebrities come together to discuss and develop innovative solutions to pressing global challenges. She’ll find out in mid-January if the Hilltop wins.
“I also think that Net Impact helps us to get involved in what is going on in the world around us, while we are in our little bubble of a campus here at West Liberty,” she said. Net Impact claims more than 100,000 members.
Fenwick, whose hometown is Springfield, Ohio, will graduate with a degree in Business and Sports Management next May. She plans on moving to San Diego after commencement to join a friend who’s in the Navy and living there.
“San Diego sounds great and I plan to start applying for positions in January,” she added.
For more information on the West College of Business or its entrepreneurship major, please visit westliberty.edu/westbusiness.
West Liberty University is a forward-looking, four-year public university steeped in a rich heritage as West Virginia’s oldest institution of higher education and offering nearly 70 undergraduate majors and 30 programs. Graduate programs include the Master of Arts in Education, the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies, the Master of Professional Studies, the Master of Science in Criminology and the online MBA degrees. For more information, please call 1.866.WESTLIB.