The Ottumwa Courier

April 9, 2014

Fairfield students proving to be future leaders

By JOSH VARDAMAN
Courier staff writer

---- — FAIRFIELD — At Fairfield High School, students interested in making a career in a business-related field have the chance to join the Fairfield chapter of Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), a nonprofit organization that helps prepare them for future careers.

“The reason we do it is because we really believe that in organizations like this, students grow a lot,” said Diane Goudy, FHS’s FBLA advisor.

Each year the FBLA chapter at FHS takes a trip to compete in the State Spring Leadership Conference, and this year’s was held in Coralville on March 27-29.

“This is a big part of our year,” Goudy said.

The 28 members of Fairfield’s FBLA chapter who went to the conference competed against approximately 700 students from 28 other Iowa chapters in three of almost 80 national and state level events over the weekend.

Those who finished in the top-3 of the national events were then invited to compete at the National Leadership Conference held in Nashville, Tenn., June 27 through July 3, and altogether FHS has nine students who qualified to compete at the national conference.

Joseph Hietpas earned the highest level of Business Achievement Award during the weekend, when he was given the America Award. He is the first student from the FHS chapter who has ever won the award, and he will be recognized for his achievement at the national conference.

The FHS chapter was also lucky enough to come home with the two contestants who were named Mr. and Ms. FBLA for the state of Iowa. Hietpas was named Mr. FBLA, while Makayla Kessel was named Ms. FBLA.

Goudy said the students and advisors will charter a bus from Fairfield to the national conference. The students are responsible for coming up with the funding for the trip, she said, so they will have several fundraisers starting in the near future.

“We are planning the fundraisers at this time,” she said.

For more information on FBLA or how to help fund the FHS chapter’s trip to the national competition, contact Goudy at 641-472-2059.

— To see reporter Josh Vardaman's Twitter feed, go to @CourierJosh