By ASHLEE GRAHAM – Every year, IHS FBLA takes a group of young and aspiring business students to the FBLA SLC (State Level Conference) to perform in a competition related to a specific area of the business field.
This year, Indiana took 38 students to the SLC in Hershey, Pennsylvania. They arrived in Hershey late Sunday evening, and left early Wednesday morning. In that time, students and advisers got to partake in a great number of workshops and enriching activities designed to build their business skills.
Senior Shreya Bharadwaj, who competed in the topic of Future Business Leader commented, “I enjoy going to states each year because I get to go to interesting workshops and meet new people with similar interests. It was also very exciting to see so many people from Indiana make it on stage for placing in their events.“
This year, the theme was Elevate Your Future for the 67th annual state leadership conference. The focus was to take business skills to the next level and to get a better view of where competitors potential future in business could be headed.
Junior Chase Cunningham, who competed in the topic of Hospitality Management says, “The 2018 FBLA State Level Conference was a great time. It was very exciting being able to represent Indiana on stage with my group, achieving 6th place in the entire state of Pennsylvania. This was a great experience with great friends that I will never forget.”
Outside of the business end of things, the SLC always has fun activities for the students after their events. On Sunday night there was a Zumba class with Mrs. Melissa Monte from 7:30 – 8:15. If you weren’t quite in the mood for physical activity, there was also crazy bingo going on from 7:30 – 9:30. These activities provided the opportunity for competitors from different schools to mingle and make new friends, as well as pass some free time.
Every year, there is the voting for the new round of executives for the next year. This year, there was a campaign rally on Monday night at 6:30 for voting delegates, advisors of state, and national candidates. During this time those that were running for a 2019 executive position were able to win over the voting delegates with pins, ribbons, snacks, and bags that they made to campaign for themselves. Indiana’s voting delegates for this year were Shreya Bharadwaj and Rebecca Shellenbarger.
When competitors didn’t have to compete in events, there were numerous workshops to attend. There were guest speakers brought in from the business world to speak to the attendees that talked about things from entrepreneurship to how to pick a college major.
Sophomore Cecilia Sherwood competed in the topic of public design and remarked, “The best part of the trip was presenting and getting a taste of the business life on the road by being allowed to choose where we ate and what we did.“
During the awards ceremony, IHS was represented by many bright individuals. Those who made it on stage were seniors Bharadwaj and Sandra Shanshala in the category of Future Business Leader. Bharadwaj received 6th place, while Shanshala received 7th place. Juniors Chase Cunningham, Brandon Boyer, and Eddy Williams received 6th place in the category of Hospitality Management, and last but not least, senior Leo Lezzer made it on stage to receive 7th place.
[Photo by Eric Brocious]
Photo Caption: “ Brandon Boyer, Chase Cunningham, and Eddy Williams stand on stage waiting to receive their awards.”