FBLA competition takes place virtually for 2020-2021; Students will head to States


      Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) takes part in annual regional competitions. With the question categories ranging from web and product development to business simulation, team members say they have to prepare for all possibilities. 

     According to the official FBLA-PBL website, the mission of FBLA is to “inspire and prepare students to become community-minded business leaders in a global society through relevant career preparation and leadership experiences.”  The FBLA programs focus on several areas such as leadership development, academic competitions, educational programs, community service, and awards and recognition.  

     North Harford High School team members include juniors Grace Herron, Jessica Fannin, and Jackie Bultman, as well as seniors Landon Arthur and Stephanie Zagraiek. Mr. Brian McCormack and Mrs. Victoria Bridges are the advisors. 

    “Usually with FBLA we focus on fundraising at the school,” Grace Herron states. Typically, the team goes on trips to New York but due to the Covid-19 outbreak, they are only focused on the regional competition this year. 

     According to Herron, judging happens at the end of January. Regional competitions happen every year at a convention center. However, this year the competition was solely virtual. 

     There are five different regions in Maryland and each region competes in different events. “They can range from testing topics like Accounting, Business Finance, Personal Finance and many more,” Mrs. Bridges shares. 

     Students can also compete in live topics such as Public Speaking. According to Bridges, Broadcast Journalism is another competition in which students create a PowerPoint on a flash drive and submit it to be graded.

     “Students that place in the top five can then move on to the state level where they then compete with all the FBLA students in the State of Maryland,” Bridges explains. In 2019, several students from NHHS were identified as Top 10 winners at the FBLA State Conference held at the Hunt Valley Inn.   In addition, a few years ago some NHHS graduates who attended the University of Maryland, started a PBL.  A PBL (Phi Beta Lambda) is a college level FBLA.

     Bridges has been the North Harford FBLA Advisor since 1999. “This club is awesome,” she  says. “We have had so many students advance to the national level over the years,” she explains.

    In December’s competition, Zagraiek placed 2nd in Accounting, Arthur placed 5th in Political Science, and team Fannin, Herron, and Bultman placed 2nd in Broadcast Journalism. 

     “The political science test consisted of American government and politics as well and some of the court systems,” Arthur shares. He says it was 100 questions and it was “pretty easy” overall. “I was happy to take part in it and represent NHHS,” Arthur states.