Plaque in hand, students pose for a picture. Students who placed in the top 10 received a plaque in recognition of hard work. 42 students from San Gabriel High School received a plaque and 27 students will be advancing to states

FBLA competes in Section Leadership Conference

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On Feb. 12, the school’s Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) chapter competed against other schools’ chapters in the Gold Coast Section Leadership Conference. Students who place high enough in sectionals will be eligible to attend the State Leadership Conference in Ontario, where they will compete against schools all across California.

Students competed in a variety of events such as Accounting, Insurance and Risk Management, Sports Entertainment and Management, Economics, and many others. Additionally, workshops were held to help students learn certain skills such as team building and public speaking.

“FBLA is the biggest business club for high school students,” Valerie Ng, Vice President of Activities, said. “We prepare students for professional careers through academic opportunities, leadership development, and educational programs.”

Due to COVID-19, the competition was held online and spanned over a course of three days. Usually, the conference occurs on one day during which students compete in their events, attend workshops, and attend the award ceremony where the top 10 students of each event are recognized with a plaque. Instead, the conference was split across four days, with the final day being the workshop sessions and awards ceremony at Westlake High School.

“During the planning process there wasn’t much trouble,” Vice President of Activities Valerie Ng said. “There was a last minute decision that we would have to take the tests in school rather than at the actual sectionals event.”

The team placed third in Sweepstakes, with 42 students placing top 10 in their events and 27 students advancing to the state competition in Ontario. If students place high enough at the state level, they can qualify for nationals held in Chicago. Senior Steven Phung placed first in Insurance and Risk Management and is advancing to the state competition.

“I attribute a lot of my success to taking practice tests and using Investopedia afterward for any unfamiliar vocabulary,” Phung said. “I’m looking forward to staying at a hotel and getting time away from family, plus the networking opportunities there.”

Students who qualified to compete at states are continuing to study in hopes of placing and qualifying in nationals and are looking forward to competing at Ontario from April 7-9.

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