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About Us

36 Years in the Making

NCC Enactus is a faculty-student-partner collaboration that focuses on direct trade, relationship-based social enterprises. Our largest initiative is our relationship selling with our Guatemalan partners including coffee, chocolates, and artisan products.

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At the heart of North Central College’s purpose, is growing the cycle of mutual empowerment. 


What is the cycle of mutual empowerment? 

The idea of the cycle of mutual empowerment came out of the need to break the traditional cycle of poverty where people can’t ever create a sustainable living. To make the cycle of mutual empowerment work, it takes everyone involved including our NCC Enactus team, our partners, and our customers. All involved benefit from the relationship:

  • Students gain skills and develop as individuals through a one-of-a-kind hands-on learning environment

  • Partners are able to apply their trade and business skills in a sustainable manner

  • Customers are able to receive high quality products that support a more socially responsible marketplace

Our NCC Enactus Team:

Our Enactus Team is made up of students from a variety of academic disciplines, but all with a common thread of wanting to create change for a better tomorrow. 

Students run the day to day operations with oversight from the advisors. This includes everything from designing product labels to packaging coffee to holding tastings across campus. In addition, students collaborate with other departments across campus on new innovative initiatives such as the viability of utilizing coffee grounds for water filtration and engineering a vacuum pump device to remove the physical limitations from the roaster’s job.


The impact on our students is long-lasting. They leave with not only new and expanded skills and increased passion for making a difference, but a better understanding of how to be a socially responsible leader. Students have gone on to start their own social enterprises, serve in the Peace Corps, and be leaders in their corporate community.

Our Partners:

Our partners are exactly that, partners. Whether here in the US or abroad, our partners are entrepreneurs with a desire, drive, and passion for making a decent and meaningful livelihood whether that be as coffee farmers or artisans in Guatemala or realtors or musicians here in Illinois. Our partners also share the same goal of wanting to create change for a better tomorrow.


To learn more about our different partners, visit our Partners Page (

Together with our customers, we can not only keep the cycle of mutual empowerment going but expand it to include more students, partners, and customers.

Partner Videos

Partner Videos

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NCC Enactus has a storied history. Originally known as SIFE  - Students in Free Enterprise - the first team was started at North Central College by Dr. Gary Ernst in 1987. The team has served thousands of adults and students through their projects. In addition, the team has competed at the highest level finishing in the top 4 nationally multiple times including a 3rd place finish in 2020 and a 2nd place finish in 2021.

For information on the national organization, please visit

Student Testimonials

Student Testimonials

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