Students represent Northwood at summer club competitions

Over the summer, FBLA, HOSA and DECA members from Northwood competed in regional, state and national competitions.

FBLA is a career and technical club that teaches students leadership and business skills. Three students from Northwood, junior Zachary Robillard, junior Mahesh Thyvelikaketh and recent graduate Daniel Cotten, went to FBLA nationals, which were held in Nashville, Tennessee.

“Like one of the students said at our interest meeting this past week, it was just awesome,” said Jane Pendergrast, the leader of Northwood’s chapter of FBLA.  “The experience of attending workshops for leadership skills, being able to be a voting delegate to decide officers that would become national officers. The experience of just competing, the nervousness that they had, but being able to show the work that they had spent so many hours on.”

DECA is an organization that prepares future leaders and entrepreneurs for careers. There are three different rounds of DECA competition: district, state and international.

District level students participate in a roleplaying situation, then take a 100 question multiple-choice test. Then, if they get to the district competition, they are given a prompt and they create a presentation.  If they place, they move on to the state level, where they can compete in the same events or apply for scholarships. If they place first, second, third or fourth, they move on to internationals.

HOSA, which is led by Chamblee and Thomas, is an organization dedicated to developing leadership and technical skills. Regional, state, and national HOSA competitions were held over the last year. Two students from Northwood, senior Frances Beroset and junior Natalie Vogel, competed in nationals in Orlando, FL, this summer and placed in the top 10.

“I think it’s a very exciting time. They’re competing against their peers from all over the country, and now from several different nations,” Chamblee said.  “I think they gained a lot of experience, met a lot of new people, and both students from this school did well.”

All of these competitions required students to prepare and study before competing.  FBLA competitors studied with the aid of advisors, but were required to do their work on their own.  HOSA preparations varied, but included reading books, taking tests and writing summaries on the books they read.  DECA competitors had to study old tests and practice roleplaying, writing papers and rehearsing.

“I really encourage students in HOSA to compete; more than just two,” said Chamblee. “We have thirty to forty students in HOSA each year, and we only take ten to competitions.”

The leaders of DECA and FBLA also hope to have more students going to competitions in the future.

– By Bailey Miller