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FBLA Regional Conference Offers Students ‘Ticket to the Future’

More than 800 regional high school and middle school students and chapter advisers from 15 middle and senior high schools recently gathered on Pennsylvania College of Technology’s main campus to compete in the Region 7 Future Business Leaders of America Conference.

For the third year, Penn College’s School of Business and Computer Technologies hosted the annual event in cooperation with the college’s Outreach for K-12 Office.

More than 20 members of the school’s faculty and staff proctored 35 competitive events, ranging from Accounting and Economics to Cyber Security and Entrepreneurship. Ten faculty/staff members also judged the day’s five major competitions: Emerging Business Issues, Impromptu Speaking, Job Interview, Public Speaking, and Mr. and Ms. Future Business Leader.

Regional winners advance to the 2007 State Leadership Conference at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center from April 30 to May 2, with an eye toward competing at the 2007 National Leadership Conference in Chicago from June 26 to July 2. This year’s FBLA theme is “Your Ticket to the Future.”

“For hosting 800 students on your campus for just one day, it went very well; things just clicked,” said Mary Thomas, regional FBLA director. “With a group as large as ours, I don’t know how I would do it without everyone’s help. Our region is one of the largest in the state. I call our event a mini-state conference. We thank (Penn College) for working with us, and hope that you come away with the feeling as we repeatedly do that our FBLA students are responsible and represent their schools well.”

“We are quite proud of our growing association with FBLA, regional school districts and teachers. We look forward to serving the swelling number of well-prepared and mentored middle school and high school students each January and exposing them to some of the quality higher-educational opportunities offered at Penn College,” commented Edward A. Henninger, dean of business and computer technologies.

Penn College student organizations involved in the daylong event included the campus chapter of the Alpha Chi national honor society. Henninger particularly acknowledged three Alpha Chi officers for their superior assistance at the FBLA conference: James R. Carpenter (president), Anthony A. Garritano (vice president) and Sabrena A. O’Keefe (secretary/treasurer).

“Each time students have an opportunity to practice the skills and knowledge they learn in the high school in a realistic environment, their true understanding of business increases,” added Jeannette L. Fraser, director of Outreach for K-12. “In today’s world, it is important to know both why and how to do things. FBLA helps students get a realistic look at business and the opportunity to experience a college campus.”

The Future Business Leaders of America/Phi Beta Lambda is a national association of nearly a quarter-million intermediate, high school, vocational, junior college, college and university students interested in business and a widening variety of allied careers. Its purpose, in addition to promoting the development of vocational competencies for business and office careers, is to promote a sense of civic and personal responsibility.

More information about the organization is available online .

For more about academic majors offered by the School of Business and Computer Technologies at Penn College, call (570) 327-4517, send e-mail or visit on the Web.

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