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GBHS students energized at national conference
new deh GBHS FBLA group
Future Business Leaders of America members who traveled to Orlando, Fla., for a national conference include from Great Bend High School, RJ Seidel, Dylan Dreiling and Colton Lagerman; and from Ellinwood High School, Kayla Schartz, Chelsea Churchill, Rachel Morales, Kit Felke and Shelbi Trarbach. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

They came home tired, but energized nonetheless.
Three Great Bend High School business students – Dylan Dreiling, Colton Lagerman and RJ Seidel – recently attended the Future Business Leaders of America National Leadership Conference in Orlando, Fla. The conference was designed to sharpen students’ core business skills and expand their networks while they participated in business and business-related competitive events.
“I just cannot put into words how valuable the experience was,” said Cody Lee, FBLA sponsor.  “I wish all students could have the opportunity. They come back so motivated and energized for the upcoming school year.
“Although they did not place at the national competition, I am so proud of their accomplishments,” Lee said. “The leadership and networking skills they gained are nothing like anything they can gain in our immediate area. They learned skills that will stay with them the rest of their lives.”
Dreiling competed in Job Interview, Lagerman in Business Math and Seidel in Hospitality Management.
Under the leadership of Adviser Lori Betts, Ellinwood High School qualified five students in one individual and two team events. Those attending the conference and their events were Rachel Morales, Computer Applications; Chelsea Churchill and Kayla Schartz, Partnership with Business; and Kit Felke and Shelbi Trarbach, Desktop Publishing.
For many students, the competitive events are the capstone activity of their academic careers, Lee added. In addition to the competitions, students immersed themselves in educational workshops, visited an information-packed exhibit hall and attended motivational keynotes on a broad range of business topics.
Lee said that Great Bend students also had the opportunity to participate in the Institute for Leaders. Institute for leaders is held in conjunction with the National Leadership Conference.  It is a high-energy, intensive leadership experience for state and local chapter officers, as well as members and advisers. The training conference helps prepare student leaders and members to assume their elected responsibilities and develop valuable life skills.
“The institute for leaders is probably the most valuable leadership training the students will ever receive,” Lee said. “We have had students participate in the past and they agree that is one of the best things they have ever participated in all their lives.”
Great Bend participants also gained professional development skills and participated in career planning workshops.