Once again, BHS’s BPA (Business Professionals of America) chapter is sending students to Nationals.
“We send a handful of kids each year,” Chapter President Marah Moy said. “At least we’re consistent. [Last year Junior] Aaron [Hamann] and I had a lot of fun in Chicago [at Nationals]. We visited a couple museums and his roommates were fun to hang out with. One of my favorite adventures was the field museum where we learned about animals and Africa.”
Moy and Hamann will be competing at Nationals along with fellow juniors Emma Schneider and Rachel Koch.
“Emma, Rach, and I are advancing for Torch which is very similar to NHS,” Moy said. “Rather than work[ing] towards hours, you work towards points.”
The Torch Awards Program gives points to members who complete certain activities. Once a certain number of points are attained, the member’s resumé is submitted for review. All three girls completed the minimum of 70 points in each of seven categories—enabling them to attend Nationals. Unlike the girls, Hamann is competing in Financial Math and Analysis.
“I like it [Financial Math and Analysis] because it’s the one that has the most to do with what I like and what I’m good at,” Hamann said. “There are so many different events that everyone can find ones that are appealing.”
BPA is an organization designed to help students prepare for careers in “business management, office administration, information technology and other related career fields.” However, not all students join to help further themselves in such fields.
“I joined my freshman year because my friend’s sister thought I would like it, and I really have,” Moy said. “I don’t have an interest in the business field that much—I just like the experience BPA has to offer. I think it’s a good foundation for professionalism and I’ve met some cool people at Regions, State, and Nationals. I love making connections with other students from across the state and country.”
Moy wasn’t the only one who joined for reasons other than preparing for a future in business.
“I joined last year because I was looking for something to do,” Hamann said. “It turned out to be something fun that doesn’t require a huge time commitment.”
This year, the four juniors will head to Orlando, Florida May 8-12 where they will be amongst 5000 other BPA members and advisers. The competition isn’t the only reason Hamann is excited for Nationals.
“It’ll be a lot of fun getting to go hang out with friends in Florida for five days,” Hamann said. “Who wouldn’t like that?”