UF SIFE, Wells Fargo team up for “Day of Difference”

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) team at the Warrington College of Business Administration and Wells Fargo Bank participated in the fifth annual Day of Difference on Feb. 25 touching the lives of thousands of elementary students in the Gainesville area.

Day of Difference has evolved into one of the largest single-day volunteer education efforts in Alachua County. SIFE students visit area schools presenting a fun and interactive curriculum focusing on the principles of market economics, entrepreneurship and civic responsibility. SIFE students believe that a strong, free enterprise foundation begins at a very early age. UF SIFE’s team coordinated 380 student volunteers who visited approximately 180 classrooms at 15 elementary schools in the Gainesville area and Alachua County. In partnership with Junior Achievement, a volunteer-driven, non-profit organization in Alachua County, more than 3,000 elementary students were reached by the program.

“Day of Difference is an opportunity for students like me to serve as role models,” said Darren Constantine, a Project Manager for Day of Difference. “Through the power of business, we educate the younger generation in financial literacy and inspire them to pursue ambitious goals for the future. The elementary school students that participate in the program absolutely love it. The students become obsessed with the interactive learning environment as well as the social aspect of bonding with the volunteers.”

Wells Fargo, a national sponsor of SIFE, made a generous gift of $40,000 to UF SIFE for its efforts.

“At Wachovia and Wells Fargo, we strongly believe we can only be successful if the communities we serve are also successful,” said Connie Smith, Florida Community Affairs Manager. “That’s why we are very proud to support UF’s SIFE team. The program’s focus on teaching financial literacy in schools, along with small business consulting, aligns perfectly with our goals. We know that financial literacy paves the way for economic self-­sufficiency and as the No. 1 SBA (Small Business Administration) lender in Florida we also know that small business success translates into jobs for our communities. And since resource sustainability is important to our company, we are very pleased that the SIFE team incorporates this component into their projects as well.”