Future business leaders to compete in national competition


Courtesy of Christopher King

First winner. Junior Tyler Houp places first in the Coding and Programming event. This was his first year participating in FBLA.

Connor George, Reporter

Junior Tyler Houp and Seniors Kaylee Smith and Emma Giles qualified for the national Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) competition set to take place in Chicago from June 29 to July 2. 

“There’s a lot more people. In States, I competed against nine people, but at Nationals, there’s at most 200 people in my category. So it’s quite nerve-wracking to go against that many people,” Houp said.

Houp placed first in Coding and Programming at states, while Smith and Giles worked together as a team to place second in Sports and Entertainment Management. Sophomore Jake Yohn placed sixth in Computer Game and Simulation Programming. If two of the people placed ahead of him cannot go, he will be able to instead. 

“For mine, I was given a topic a couple months in advance about something to program,” Houp said. “There were certain criteria I had to meet, and I made the program and presented it.”

“For Regionals, we had to take an online objective test,” Smith said. “We placed second at Regionals which qualified us for States. We had to take the test again, and we made the top 15. The top 15 go to States and give a presentation on sports and entertainment management. Our topic was creating a media outsource book for a NCAA football team, and we had to focus on how we could include the other sports. It was really just marketing to the NCAA advisers and coaches.”

FBLA has a history in Altoona.

“We’ve had a chapter here for pretty much 50 years… The last time we’ve been to the National competition was 2018,” co-adviser Jesse Frailey said.

One concern of qualifying students was funding. Members were unsure about whether the club had the money to go to the competition. 

“As far as we know right now, we have a possibility of going, but we have to figure out the funding,” Smith said. 

However, funding is not the problem keeping the club from going to Chicago.

“Funding is not an issue, all of that is in,” Frailey said. “We just need the school board to approve it.”