IRHS students compete

Eight Indian River High School students competed in the Business Professionals of America 2004-2005 National Leadership Conference in Anaheim, Calif. on April 22-25. Each student earned an invitation to Anaheim by placing in the top three or five of events at the BPA State Conference in Dover on March 3-4.

Students who attended the national conference were Mindy Allen, Eddie Edwards, Sean McMullen, Brenna Morin, Tim Paris, Karalyn Roach, Brad Tephabock and Tommy Reichert. They competed in a variety of events, including Fundamental Accounting, Payroll Accounting, Visual Basic Programming, Graphic Design, Extemporaneous Speech and Financial Math and Analysis.

Paris placed ninth in the Visual Basic Programming competition, becoming the first-ever Indian River student to reach the national finals of an event.

Approximately 4,000 delegates from across the United States participated in the 39th BPA National Leadership Conference. Activities included sessions with keynote speakers, business meetings, leadership workshops, academic competitions and the election of national officers. The theme of the conference was “Strike It Rich.”

“The experience that these students gained by attending the national conference is priceless and we are extremely proud of each of them,” BPA chapter advisor Bennett Murray said.

Business Professionals of America is a national organization for middle school, high school and college students preparing for careers in business occupations. The organization’s activities and programs complement classroom instruction by giving students practical experience through the application of skills learned at school. Business Professional of America acts as a cohesive agent in the nationwide networking of education and business industry, and is contributing to the preparation of a world-class workforce through the advancement of leadership, citizenship, academics and technological skills.

Murray reorganized Indian River’s BPA chapter three years ago with the help of fellow teacher Diane Durham.

“The kids are dedicated and hard working. This has allowed the program to grow from nothing a few years ago to 44 members strong this year,” he said.

Murray also thanked local businesses for providing financial support that helped the students to attend the national conference.