By WILEY FRUMKIN – The Future Business Leaders of America, commonly known as FBLA, is the largest student organization in America. It’s a club that helps members prepare for careers in business and business-related fields.
The Indiana Area Senior High recently sent many of their qualified FBLA members to the 2017 State Leadership Conference in Hershey, Pennsylvania. It was there that they competed in various business related events.
A team made up of seniors Claire Kuzneski, Teresa Roth, and Erin Fanning came out on top, placing 4th in the state for their marketing event. They now are headed to the National Leadership Conference that will be held in Anaheim, California from June 24- 27.
Kuzneski is also the president of IHS’s FBLA. The vice president is junior Shreya Bharadwaj, treasurer is senior Sean Bray, secretary is senior Abby Hagans, and membership chair is senior Megan Pesci.
The State Leadership Conference was held from April third through the fifth. To qualify for states, students in FBLA signs up for a regional event. In Pennsylvania, there are 28 regions, and IHS is part of Region 3. Students compete against other regions by taking tests, sending in entries, or entering a performance event, such as public speaking, where they “perform” in front of judges. “Everyone gets to choose one of the many events. Some of these you have to do yourself and others are team events only.” said Kuzneski.
Some events that require taking a test are marketing, accounting, business applications, management decisions, and other events. Performance events may include public speaking, job interviews, or client services.
Students who placed high enough in their region made their way to the State Leadership Conference. There, depending on their event, they take another test, or give another presentation or speech, but this time they are competing against a lot more teams.
Kuzneski, Roth, and Fanning took a 100 question test for regionals in December. They placed first out of three teams in their region. In the state competition, they were competing against 27 other teams. After placing in the top 10, they then had to give a presentation in front of the judges. This IHS marketing team placed 4th in the state, qualifying them for the National Tournament.
Senior Benji Walters placed 5th for his event of business law, junior Leo Lezzer placed 8th in his event of help desk, and sophomore Shane Connor placed 7th in his event of computer game simulation. “The way our school did in this competition really reflects how well they are preparing students for the real world.” says senior Hannah Colen.
“We also have a decent amount of free time so we can take shuttles to the Hershey outlets or Chocolate World.” Kuzneski says. The FBLA trip is centered around business competition but the students also have time to enjoy themselves and have fun.
[Photo by Shreya Bharadwaj]
Photo Caption: “The PAFBLA State Secretary presents seniors Teresa Roth and Erin Fanning with their fourth place award in marketing at the FBAL State Conference in Hershey, PA