The Ketochi

Cascade BPA Members Shine at Nationals

Cascade+chapter+members+pose+for+a+group+photo+at+the+National+Leadership+Convention+in+Boston.+Back+row+%28l-r%29%3A+Jensen+Knaub%2C++Evan+McGonigal%2C+Merle+Infanger%2C+Jayson+Fredrickson%2C+Zach+Riphenburg%2C+Allison+Gates%2C+Payten+Zenahlik%2C+Tommy+Le%2C+Kaden+Hankins%2C+Ember+Schwindt.+Front+row+%28l-r%29%3A+Kelli+Ober%2C+Becca+Gerard%2C+Kacie+Cummings%2C+Kara+Lorance%2C+Quincy+Balius.
Cascade chapter members pose for a group photo at the National Leadership Convention in Boston. Back row (l-r): Jensen Knaub,  Evan McGonigal, Merle Infanger, Jayson Fredrickson, Zach Riphenburg, Allison Gates, Payten Zenahlik, Tommy Le, Kaden Hankins, Ember Schwindt. Front row (l-r): Kelli Ober, Becca Gerard, Kacie Cummings, Kara Lorance, Quincy Balius.

Cascade chapter members pose for a group photo at the National Leadership Convention in Boston. Back row (l-r): Jensen Knaub, Evan McGonigal, Merle Infanger, Jayson Fredrickson, Zach Riphenburg, Allison Gates, Payten Zenahlik, Tommy Le, Kaden Hankins, Ember Schwindt. Front row (l-r): Kelli Ober, Becca Gerard, Kacie Cummings, Kara Lorance, Quincy Balius.

Photo courtesy Linda Cotton

Photo courtesy Linda Cotton

Cascade chapter members pose for a group photo at the National Leadership Convention in Boston. Back row (l-r): Jensen Knaub, Evan McGonigal, Merle Infanger, Jayson Fredrickson, Zach Riphenburg, Allison Gates, Payten Zenahlik, Tommy Le, Kaden Hankins, Ember Schwindt. Front row (l-r): Kelli Ober, Becca Gerard, Kacie Cummings, Kara Lorance, Quincy Balius.

Quincy Balius, Student Editor

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What do American Revolutionary War history, seafood, and whales all have in common? There is plenty of them to be found in the city of Boston, Massachusetts, where the National Leadership Conference of Business Professionals of America took place.

Fifteen students from Cascade took part in the elite competition, which spanned twenty-three states and Puerto Rico. They competed in Computer Security, Legal Office Procedures, Presentation Management, Parliamentary Procedure Team, and Network Design Team. While none of them placed in the top three of any event, the Network Design Team, made up of Kaden Hankins, Evan McGonigal, and Merle Infanger, took fourth in their event for the second year in a row and made it onstage at the national conference.

The team presented their project before nationals to gubernatorial candidate Greg Gianforte, who greatly praised the design. The judges at nationals had no criticisms for the team, although their project could have been a little stronger.

Junior Kaden Hankins said, “Nationals was really fun, and it was all about the competition. Network Design worked really hard, got really far, and did a great job.”

Here are the assorted placings for BPA members:

Out of 403 competitors in Parliamentary Procedure Concepts, Kacie Cummings placed 12 out of 403 Allison Gates placed 13 and Kelli Ober placed 37th.

Out of 418 competitors in Information Technology, Merle Infanger placed 21 and Kaden Hankins placed 81st.

Quincy Balius placed 12 out of 569 in Management, Marketing and Human Resource and 43 out of 551 in Business Meeting Management.

Evan McGonigal placed 23 out of 477 in the Merit Scholar competition.  The Parliamentary Procedure Team, made up of Kacie Cummings, Allison Gates, Kelli Ober, Zach Douglas, Kara Lorance, Jayson Fredrickson and Becca Gerard, placed 12.

Kelli Ober placed 17 out of 45 in presentation management.

Four members achieved their Ambassador Torch Award – Quincy Balius, Kacie Cummings, Becca Gerard, and Kelli Ober.

The Cascade Chapter was awarded the Chapter Award of Excellence, the Outstanding Achievement Award for Safety Awareness, and the Outstanding Achievement Award for Community Service.

Besides competitions, the Cascade chapter attended sessions, most memorably one hosted by Crystal Washington, a social-media educator who has helped companies such as Apple and Google strengthen their presence online. Her advice to the assembled students was to be careful of their online images and join programs such as LinkedIn and Google Alert.

Additionally, former Montana state BPA president Drew Mammel ran for national office and was elected to the position of national BPA president.

Cascade also took a whale-watching trip, enjoyed a state cruise with all the Montana chapters, went to Six Flags amusement park, attended a Red Sox baseball game at Fenway Park and saw a number of historic monuments in Boston. State officers Becca Gerard and Kelli Ober served as interns and voting delegates at the conference. The Cascade chapter won a variety of awards, and Montana received the traveling Spirit of Professionalism trophy.

Advisor Linda Cotton said that she was “very, very proud of all the delegates.”

Congratulations to all BPA competitors!

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Cascade BPA Members Shine at Nationals