Firth and Shelley BPA students place at State; now going to nationals

SHELLEY — Students from Firth and Shelley placed at the state BPA competition and will now compete at nationals.

At last week’s Business Professionals of America State competition, students from Shelley and Firth placed everywhere from tenth to first. Those students will now compete at nationals at the end of April.

“Idaho typically has around 1,5000 kids who compete and are involved in BPA. All of the different schools will have (BPA) chapters and the kids will go and do different competitive events from speaking events to design, computer events — they’ve got all kinds of stuff,” Firth BPA advisor Kim Harrison told Community Pioneer.

Firth had 13 students qualify for nationals and Shelley had two. On top of qualifying and their wins at State, Firth and Shelley both received other awards and honors.

Lucy Christensen from Shelley was elected as the Idaho BPA Vice President.

“It’s quite a big Honor,” Shelley BPA advisor Pam Kantack said. “It’s being an officer for the whole state of Idaho and helping lead the other BPA students. Her focus is to get more students involved and get people to recognize what BPA is too.”

Harrison received the Korky Williams Award. The award is given to BPA advisors who have advised students for 20 years or more and whose legacy is deserving of recognition and emulation.

“I guess it means I’m old and have taught forever,” Harrison said.

While Harrison was humble when asked about the award’s significance, Kantack explained that it is a distinction that not many advisors receive.

“She is very modest about it, but it’s quite a big deal. It’s quite an honor for her,” Kantack said.

Kantack said that it was due to Harrison’s, influence that she raised the number of participants in Shelley’s BPA group.
Shelley’s team was recognized with a prestigious award. They won the BPA Professional Cup.

“It’s an award showing that your chapter excels in recruitment and Torch Awards and doing service. It’s like your the best chapter in the state,” Kantack explained.

According to BPA.org, the Torch Awards Program is designed to promote professionalism and leadership in career development and personal growth.

To receive Torch Awards, students complete activities in the seven Torch categories: Leadership; Service; Cooperation; Knowledge; Friendship; Love, Hope, Faith; and Patriotism.

The BPA Professional Cup is a traveling trophy. Shelley’s BPA chapter will keep it for a year. When a new chapter is awarded the cup, Shelley’s will receive a plaque that will stay in the high school.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, BPA Nationals will be held online this year. Because the competition is virtual, Harrison said more students are able to compete.

“They kind of opened it up a bit more this year because everything is virtual across the nation. They wanted to make it so a few more kids got more opportunity to try to compete at nationals,” Harrison explained.

The national competition will be held from April 26 through May 9.a

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