Cape Girardeau, MO, May 22, 2020– Sixteen members of the Missouri Future Business Leaders of America – Phi Beta Lambda Chapter from Notre Dame Regional High School recently participated in the 2020 Missouri FBLA-PBL Virtual State Leadership Conference. This virtual experience provided members from across Missouri with over 200 hours of educational and leadership content, live forums with industry leaders, and interactive educational activities in an online platform.
Character development coach and motivational speaker Stephen Mackey keynoted the conference, sharing a message to equip people to take responsibility and change their lives.
“Virtual was not how I wanted to compete,” said Notre Dame senior Natalie Timpe. “One of the most valuable parts of the Leadership Conference is networking with other high schools. However, with the conference going virtual it also forced us to focus on other aspects of our project, for example, in addition to our presentation we also had to turn in a written analysis at the State level. The virtual competition was a valuable lesson in being flexible and being able to adapt to changing circumstances, which I guess is what the real world is about anyway.”
Over 3,500 students and advisers came together for the event, with over 150 business education-related contests running during the event. Contest topics range from accounting to website design, marketing to mobile application development. This 2020 conference marked the first year the conference was not held in person.
Notre Dame senior Selena Priggel said, “Participating in virtual competitions was great practice thinking on your feet. It really forced me to take ownership of my project and answer questions with confidence. It was valuable life experience.”
Five of Notre Dame’s students finished in the top 20. Students who place in the top four of their particular event at the State Leadership Conference advance to compete at the National Leadership Conference. This year’s National Leadership Conference has also moved to a virtual competition. Selena Priggel and Natalie Timpe placed fourth in the Public Service Announcement category. They wrote, shot, and edited a PSA (Public Service Announcement) on financial literacy.
This is Gail Timpe’s second year as the moderator for FBLA. In addition to leading a powerful showing at FBLA District and State competitions, Timpe started an FBLA Business Breakfast Series that brought in community leaders including Dan Pression, Jessica Hill, and Tyler Cuba to talk about interview decorum, nonprofit and for-profit relationships, and financial literacy, respectively.
Gail Timpe added, “I’m proud of all the students for stepping up to the challenge of competing at State. For a lot of them, the District level competition is out of their comfort zone, so qualifying for the next level and taking the time to prepare for the State competition, especially in an unfamiliar platform, says a lot about their character. FBLA this year has afforded the students many opportunities that will prove valuable, not only in high school but as they enter the job force as well.”
Missouri FBLA-PBL, a chartered member of National FBLA-PBL, is a registered 501(c)3. Their mission is to bring business and education together in a positive working relationship through innovative leadership and career development programs. Missouri FBLA-PBL membership exceeds 15,500, making it the second largest state chapter of the organization in the nation and the second largest Career and Technical Student Organization in Missouri.
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