Future business leaders from Moffat County High School excel in FBLA, DECA — headed to state | CraigDailyPress.com

Future business leaders from Moffat County High School excel in FBLA, DECA — headed to state

FBLA and DECA state qualifiers consider how to build businesses in Craig

— Business savvy and confidence makes Moffat County High School’s Future Business Leaders of American at DECA students so successful.

That savvy helped send a record number of MCHS students to state this year.

"This amazing group has spent countless hours taking tests, researching new business opportunities, designing promotional materials and preparing speeches, and its great to see the hard work payoff," said Krista Schenck, high school business teacher, DECA and FBLA coach.

DECA will send 11 students to the state competition Feb. 25 to 28 in Colorado Springs and 16 students will compete at the FBLA state competition April 19 to 21 in Vail.

Students credit their success to confidence and real life experience.

"It's a small town… parents might be entrepreneurs and I think that is defiantly an advantage," said senior Pearl Wyman who competes with teammate and junior, Olivia Neece.

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The top three competitors from each of the state competitions will advance to nationals that will be held in Anaheim, California and will include a visit to Disneyland.

"Me and Olivia started in debate and changed over to DECA. It's more fun and less stress and Disneyland was a good incentive to do well," Wyman said.

Most of the students are planning careers in business.

"DECA and FBLA role-play help prepare members for the fierce competition in the real world where they have to think on their feet," Schenck said. "Written events require students to communicate their ideas in writing… students are also learning to network, collaborate in diverse teams and fundraise."

Advice from business leaders of the future

The 16 state qualifiers shared thoughts on creating new businesses in Craig.

"We need an industry to pull-in people from other areas, to start something new and innovative that will keep the modern workforce going and allow smaller entrepreneurs to get going," said sophomore Brianna Burkett.

Students thought it was important to welcome ideas from all generations.

"We need people in our age range who go away to college and come back with new ideas," said senior Isaac Montoya.

Another key, to success might be staying open to new ideas.

"It is a small and conservative town there's a lot of tradition here, but we need an open mind. If Craig isn't a welcoming community to young people a new recreation center won't matter," Wyman said.

In addition to the creation of a recreational complex, Target and Costco top the list of new business they'd like to see move to town followed by Cabala's or Sportsman's Warehouse to encourage hunters to linger and spend while in the area.

"I think we need more diversity in what we offer in town, if we expanded and added things then we would be more successful," Neece said.

Students agreed that new businesses need community support.

"A lot start, but a year later they are in bankruptcy," Burkett said.

Students also expressed a desire for new businesses to fill existing spaces.

"We need a revamp of the mall. It's a sad building it makes you feel that Craig is decrepit," Wyman said. "Small entrepreneurs should use the empty buildings that we have. We need to put businesses in them."

As students prepare for state competition, the business skills they learn today could create a better tomorrow.

"This year has been amazing with the large number of students who have joined our team to enhance their skills and work towards a brighter future," Schenck said.

Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @CDP_Education.

State Qualifiers

In DECA and FBLA:

Trinity Schenck

Makayla Thompson

John Peroulis

Kyann Kainz

Tyler Gonzoles

Isaac Montoya

Marisa Hulstine

Marlyn Arellano

Brianna Burkett

Olivia Neece

Pearl Wyman

In FBLA only:

Kaylee Durham

Josh Gumber

Hali Reyes

Caitlen Krause

Molly Neton