Nearly 40 members of Brunswick High School’s chapter of the Future Business Leaders of America recently returned from their annual leadership conference in Athens.
At the conference, the students took part in leadership development workshops, networked with FBLA chapters from around the state and heard from a motivational keynote speaker.
Mackenzie Buck, a new FBLA chapter member at Brunswick High, said the conference opened her eyes to the opportunities FBLA can offer.
She participated in a “Leading Ladies” workshop, attended by young women at the conference. She said the young women exchanged empowering quotes, shared insecurities and watched inspirational videos.
“It was a nice experience,” said Buck, a freshman. “It was empowering, so they succeeded in their goal.”
D’Armand Henley-Blash, a senior member, said he came home from the trip with a new breadth of knowledge on what it takes to be a leader.
“If you have a goal set, reach that goal … Without any real good sacrifice, you won’t get anywhere,” he said.
The students also learned confidence-building techniques, said Verna Li, a sophomore member.
“We had this lady come in and talk about basically how to seem confident in front of people, and it was really encouraging,” she said. “I felt inspired because she talked about how she was really shy, and she was able to overcome it.”
The conference took place Nov. 15 and Nov. 16. Back at school Nov. 17, the students hosted a March of Dimes service project, to raise money and awareness to improve the health of mothers and babies and prevent birth defects and infant mortality.
Community service is an integral part of FBLA, said Henley-Blash, the chapter’s service vice president.
“Community service is a great way to give back to the people who may not have what you have,” he said.
The leadership conference opens members’ eyes to the large scope of opportunities FBLA has to offer its member, Li said.
“Last year was my first year, and I remember going there to Athens, and I just felt really connected because I saw that there were so many other FBLA members,” she said. “When I first joined, I just didn’t know that it’s such a big organization.”