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HomeOur Impact What Are Students, Teachers and Business Leaders Saying?
What Are Students, Teachers and Business Leaders Saying?

“When I began SAGE as a sophomore, I was shy and quite afraid of public speaking. Through SAGE, not only was I able to gain confidence but I was able to start my own business and help people around the world.”

Allie Marasco, SAGE student, 2009-2011, Co-owner, Small World Publishing

“In my humble opinion, the U.S. Mission accomplished more with a few hours of our time and a couple hundred bucks than we accomplished with the entire foreign aid budget for Africa in a year. In short, the SAGE staffs are my heroes because you don’t talk about changing the world, you’re doing it!”

Rich Shields, former Financial Management Officer, U.S. Mission to Nigeria

“Unemployment is a big problem in Nigeria, especially amongst our youth. What SAGE does is give young people the training and skills needed to run businesses and make money, and then in going forward to become employers themselves.”

Dr. Abdu Mukhtar, MD and CEO of Abuja Investments Company

“The presentations were definitely better than some of the start-up presentations I’ve seen from adults.”

Mark Velligan, Director of Portfolio Management at Genentech

“It is so important to our country and our communities to instill entrepreneurship into students at an early age. I commend SAGE for their outstanding support of entrepreneurship.”

Kenzie Ferguson, Director, Corporate Responsibility at TE Connectivity

“Before SAGE, I wanted to be a doctor.  Now, I want to build high schools.”

SAGE student from Nigeria (Federal Capital Territory)

“One of the best weapons against terror is youth empowerment through education, and SAGE is part of the secret arsenal.”

Major Miemie Winn Byrd, Former Deputy Economic Advisor, U.S. Pacific Command

“I was truly amazed with the passion and creativity of the students I met. Whether they go on to pursue business or not, their participating in SAGE will instill in them lessons of teamwork, discipline and ethics; all of which will pay generous dividends in the years to come.”

U.S. Congressman Wally Herger, California SAGE judge

Additional evidence of success can be seen from a sampling of comments made by various participants:

“I look at all the high school student teams and see genuine hope for the future. My students were thrilled to interact, learn from, and make new friends with such bright students from other cultures.”

Olga Azarova, Faculty Adviser, 2005 Ukraine SAGE National Champion from Specialized Secondary School No. 117, Odessa

“When you see young people put together business plans and operate businesses, when you see them benefit their communities through business, you cannot but feel optimistic about the future. These young people are ready, before high-school graduation, to contribute meaningfully to their communities. They have learned self-reliance, undoubtedly the most important skill with which they could graduate from high school. They have also learned the importance of operating business in a socially-responsible manner.”

Dr. Willie Hopkins, Former Dean of the College of Business at California State University, Chico. Hopkins also judged the presentations.

“Our SAGE team has been devoted to creating a better life for people around us. By carrying out a number of creative businesses, community and teaching activities, we have made an incredible difference. We have learned things that we wouldn’t be taught in a classroom. Putting ourselves into real world practice provides us a good opportunity to learn better about business, people and society. Thanks to SAGE, we are able to taste the fruits of our first business, while creating values, and learning the importance of giving back to society.”

2004 China SAGE National Champion from Shanghai Kongjiang High School

“SAGE is definitely not just another activity for high school students. I am in great awe of the great work that the Chico State University students produce on a regular basis. We are proud to be associated with SAGE and look forward to working with you in the future.”

Mr. John Gremer, Walgreens Executive, SAGE sponsor

“We joined our efforts together to realize our ideas and dreams, to gain teamwork, leadership and communication skills, and to find our way to come up in the world. We had to overcome many difficulties, but we realized and implemented our activities through persistence and patience, along with the support of all those who are not indifferent to the young generation of Tajikistan. Our progress continues, and hard work is ahead of us…and this is just the beginning…”

2004 Tajikistan SAGE National Champion –Team of Lyceum No., Kayrakkum city

“With assistance from our college mentors, our SAGE students are committed to the promotion of entrepreneurship and environmental awareness through exemplary education for life. SAGE provides our members with the opportunity to extend technical knowledge to real business pursuits. We have shown that young people can make a difference in our community.”

2004 Philippines SAGE National Champion from Central Philippine University Development School, Iloilo City

“I just wanted to personally thank you and your university students for a great day of competition.  It was so AWESOME to be on the campus, get feedback from GREAT judges….My students felt connected to the presentations they watched.  They have learned so much from the experience.  Most of all I wanted to say thank you for making me feel welcome.  It was hard this first go-round….  I am excited for next year-  I all ready have made changes in my curriculum from the CONSTRUCTIVE feedback from the judges……  Great Job!”

Lisa Parker, ROP/Business Teacher, Dixon High School SAGE Team

At the SIFE USA National Competition in Kansas City, Missouri, in May 2005, several business executives judged the team from Chico State. Here are some of their comments about SAGE:

  • “SAGE is a great program. We need to get more high schools involved!”
  • “Super job with SAGE!”
  • “SAGE is a good activity. Keep it going. Try to get it into more states.”
  • Global SAGE is outstanding!  What an accomplishment!”
  • “Very strong communication of the institutions that support the global economy.  These concepts are taught at the MBA level.  Good job!”
  • “A lot of lives have been touched by your efforts – how does it feel to be a “Blessing” in the lives of others?”
  • “SAGE shows tremendous results.”
  • “Teaching the teacher is very important – until the teacher understands, it is impossible for them to effectively teach others.  Global SAGE is a very effective activity. Excellent work – you are carrying out some very worthwhile activities benefiting many people.”
  • “Great programs! You are making a positive impact!  Keep striving to reach more people with your message.”
  • “Global SAGE is a winner!”