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CMR High School hosts Business Professionals of America conference

Posted at 1:59 PM, Jan 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-21 16:17:30-05

GREAT FALLS — C.M. Russell High School hosted students from all over Montana today for the Region 3 Business Professionals of America competition.

Every year, students compete and show their skills in more than 60 business-related disciplines.

Some of they events included Economic Research, Prepared Speech, Human Resource Management, and Management Information Systems.

The awards ceremony was held in the CMR High School auditorium, where students found out where they placed.

The winners of each regional contest across the state are invited to the State Leadership Conference in Billings in March. The winners at the State Conference get to go to the National Leadership Conference in May.

Great Falls High School senior Robert Van Spyk placed first in seven categories for both individual and team competitions, and he attributed his success to a ton of preparation.

"A lot of doing other clubs,” Van Spyk said. “Trying to get yourself prepared with practice tests, and also just finding study material and talking to your advisors."

Members of the community were asked to be judges for certain categories, and got to work in two and a half hour shifts throughout the day.

(JANUARY 20, 2020) On Monday, Great Falls Public Schools will host the annual Business Professionals of America Regional Conference in Great Falls.

More than 300 students from various high schools in the region will compete in 60 business areas.

Schools that attend the Region 3 conference are: Cascade, Centerville, CMR, Great Falls, Conrad, Denton, Fairfield, Heart Butte, Fergus (Lewistown), Geraldine, Geyser, Havre, Hobson, Moore, Power, Rocky Boy, North Star, Simms, Stanford, Valier, and Winifred.

Past competitors from both CMR High School and Great Falls High School are returning to compete tomorrow.

CMR Senior Amiya Williams has spent her entire high school career competing and has grown with each competition.

"My first year it was a ton of fun but I definitely feel like every presentation I give, every test I take is preparing you a little bit more for the realistic future out in the real world,” Williams said.

Williams added that the conference is also a great networking opportunity.

“You meet so many new students from around the state of Montana and then if you progress on you meet them from all around the United States.”

Fellow CMR High School Senior, Quinn Soltesz, is a 3-year participant who encourages others to give the competition a shot.

“I would highly encourage it. It’s pretty low stakes especially at regionals. You can just try out what you’re interested in and see if you like it. And if you don’t that’s fine. But if you do there’s a lot of opportunity to continue on,” Soltes said.

Tia Zaremski, a Great Falls High School junior, said her two years in the conference have prepared her for her future.

I feel like every career has a touch of business in it. So just a foundation of that knowledge is really influential to how successful you’ll be in your future...This has definitely given me the tools to experiment with business and know if I want to go into that field further,” Zaremski said.

The 2020 Region 3 BPA Conference will start at 8 a.m. and wrap up at 3 p.m. Monday. While the competition is a closed event, the public is welcome to attend the awards ceremony at 4:30 p.m.