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AU Business Students Receive Second Consecutive Community Improvement Grant 

The Anderson University Students in Free Enterprise, or SIFE, team has been named one of 25 organizations nationwide to receive the prestigious Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation (LCEF) Community Improvement Challenge grant. The 2011 honor marks the second consecutive award granted to the AU team.

The grant was offered for the first time last year by the LCEF to nonprofit organizations and public agencies in communities where Lowe’s operates stores and distribution centers. The SIFE teams that receive the funding are awarded $2,000 grants for the structural improvement of community, educational, municipal, or residential facilities or operations.

Following the first grant awarded to Anderson last year, the AU SIFE team chose to assist the Calvary Children’s Home in Anderson. During the economic recession, the Children’s Home was forced to close its doors due to a lack of financial support from the community. After visiting Calvary, the AU SIFE team chose to assist them in the development of a new park for the children. To aid in the cleanup and development of the new play area, they organized a cleaning and information day, where they worked with volunteers from the community to reestablish “The Park of Hope,” a clean and safe area for Calvary’s children.

Dr. Bill Laing, one of the AU SIFE team’s faculty advisors and associate professor of business at AU, commented on Anderson’s second consecutive Lowe’s grant: “It was a tremendous honor to have received the Lowe’s Community Improvement Challenge grant last year; to be awarded it again this year is an excellent opportunity for our students to further their charitable work in the Anderson community. A special ‘thank-you’ should be given to Mr. Greg Skipper at the Lowe’s of Anderson for his assistance in our work with the Calvary Children’s Home of Anderson.”

Founded in 1957, the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation (LCEF) has a long and proud history of contributing to grassroots community projects. LCEF awards millions annually to diverse organizations across the United States. The mission of the LCEF is to improving the communities they serve through support of public education, community improvement projects, and home safety initiatives.

SIFE is an international non-profit organization that works with leaders in business and higher education to mobilize university students to make a difference in their communities while developing the skills to become socially responsible business leaders. Participating students form teams on their university campuses and apply business concepts to develop outreach projects that improve the quality of life and standard of living.

 Anderson University is a comprehensive university affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention offering bachelors and masters degrees. Anderson is ranked in the Top Tier (top 21) of colleges and universities in the South, and one of 68 “Up and Coming” schools to watch in America, by U. S. News & World Report. It is the #1 “Up and Coming” school in The South according to that publication.  Anderson has also been named one of “Americas 100 Best College Buys,” Located in The Upstate region of South Carolina near the foothills of the Appalachians, Anderson University features a rigorous education in a supportive Christian environment.

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