Quincy FBLA hosts sports marketing event in Wenatchee
The Quincy teenagers from the Future Business Leaders of America chapter served as hosts, although they stood a good 40 minutes from home.
The icy yet cozy confines of Town Toyota Center in Wenatchee served as the location where the Quincy FBLA welcomed FBLA members from schools across North Central Washington on Dec. 6 for an afternoon of learning about sports marketing, leadership and success.
Students from as far as Tonasket and Oroville listened to a trio of speakers – including Quincy School District Superintendent John Boyd – toured the center, competed against each other, and then watched a Wenatchee Wild game. It was all part of an afternoon of camaraderie and learning that is growing into a tradition among FBLA circles in the organization’s North Central region.
“This is our third annual pro sports career day with the Wenatchee Wild that the Quincy FBLA has hosted,” said Vanessa Buenrostro, the vice president of the Quincy FBLA chapter.
Attendance last year reached about 70 students. This year, the event had more than 100 students, from places such as Ephrata, Wenatchee, Cashmere, Tonasket, Oroville and Quincy.
Attendance could have been higher, but Cle Elum could not make it, although one of the sponsors was from Cle Elum, the Quincy FBLA chapter’s media manager Gonzalo Birrueta said.
“It was a great time,” he said. “The kids were really into the speakers, and I’m sure they came out at the end of the day with a lot of tips on young entrepreneurship and leadership.”
In addition to Boyd, speakers included Bliss Littler, head coach of the Wild, an ice hockey team based in Wenatchee. The team’s marketing manager Jennifer Bushong also spoke, as did legendary Omak wrestling coach Larry Gibson.
The talks are meant to motivate and inspire students on how to become leaders and become successful, said America Simental, president of the Quincy chapter of FBLA.
Organizing these talks has increased the profile of the Quincy FBLA chapter within the North Central region.
“The other chapters kind of recognize Quincy as the ones who put this on,” Simental said. “So we do kind of have (made) a name for ourselves.’’
At the same time, planning and organizing the event helps Quincy students prepare for the future, she added.
“It helps not only with speaking in front of people, not being so afraid, but also networking with other people, older and younger,” Simental said.
The chapter historian, Silvia Esparza, said the group had made connections all across the region while preparing the event.
“People from other different chapters come to us and say, ‘Oh, we like your speaker, can we have their information to have them to our school?’” Esparza said.
The event, despite happening in Wenatchee, had a lot of Quincy flavor to it. Farmer Bean and Seed was one of its sponsors, attendees at the event wore shirts that carried a logo designed especially for the event by Birrueta, and the shirts were also pressed at QHS.
In addition, FBLA chapters attending the event competed with one another by bringing their collected non-perishable food. First place went to Cashmere’s chapter, and all the proceeds went to the Quincy Food Bank.
The winning chapter took home a shirt signed by Wenatchee Wild players, but judging by what Birrueta said, all the students took home something from the event.
“If you have a dream, don’t just dream about it. Work for it, starting now,” he said. “Because once you’re out of high school, there’s always stuff you want to do but there are obstacles that come in your way. So you have to start now.”
By Sebastian Moraga, firstname.lastname@example.org