Business Club Wins Six Awards, Has Four Members Nominated for National Conference

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The Business Professionals of America club recently attended state finals on March 15-18 in Grand Rapids, Mich. The club was awarded six awards and had four members nominated to attend the National Leadership Conference in Dallas, Texas on May 9-13.

Gurekmann Gill, Plymouth junior, finished in first place in the nation in the BPA Investment ‘Stock Market Challenge,’ along with Krupesh Patel, Canton junior, who finished in second place in the BPA Investment ‘Stock Market Challenge’ and seventh place in the Business Law and Ethics event. Ismaeel Mian, Canton sophomore, was the state champion in Network Administration using Microsoft, while Anwesh Dabade, Plymouth junior, finished in third place in Financial Math and Raamiz Qureshi, Canton junior, finished in third place in C++ Programming.

Gill will be awarded $750 at Nationals for his first place win and Patel will be awarded $400 for his second place win.

Qureshi said, “States went really well. Four of us have qualified for Nationals and everyone did really well. We had a great time in Grand Rapids and it was a great experience.”

Tom Kimball, Plymouth business teacher and BPA advisor, said that the event had over 2,200 people participating.

To prepare for events such as these, “Many of us have to study for a written test by taking practice tests, collecting reference material and learning through the use of real life situations such as a CTE class or, in my case, playing around with my servers,” said Mian. “However other events require interviews or presentations in which much more must be done such as practicing posture, transitions and timing.”

“Intelligence and academic strength reflects a very minor portion of the preparation. It is more beneficial to be dedicated rather than intelligent when it comes to succeeding in BPA. If [participants] are dedicated, they can keep an open mind, and learn whatever it takes to perform well at the competition,” said Patel.

In regards to the Investment Challenge, Patel said, “I was competing with more than 900 students across the United States. In the competition, each participant was given $100,000 and they had to invest that in US stocks, ETFs or mutual funds for 2 months. At the end of the 2 months, my portfolio was valued nearly $146,000.”

“BPA is the leading organization for students who wish to pursue a career in the areas of business, finance or information technology, among others,” according to “Students can compete in 72 different events at regional, state, and national competitions… that coincide with specific business courses we have here at the Park [such as] Fundamental Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Banking and Finance, Financial Analyst Team, Integrated Office Applications, Computer Security and Networking, C++ Programming, Java Programming, Fundamentals of Web Design and Digital Publishing.”

“We, not only study for our competitive events, but also actively involve ourselves in community service and fundraisers,” said Mian.

Patel said, “BPA has taught me to be a leader in my community. I learned that leadership is best served when one empowers others around them to reach their goals.”

“When I joined, I was excited to see an event for Network Administration using Microsoft and I was happy to see that I could utilize my skill in a club since PCEP doesn’t have a networking class,” said Mian. “BPA has allowed me to exercise my greatest talent of computer networking.”

Qureshi said BPA has given him, “the opportunity to start a career in business and learn more about the subject as a whole,” as well as it has helped make him, “more prepared for applying to business colleges in the future.”

“My experience, to this day, has consisted of chapter meetings, Davenport practice session, regional competition and state competition. I have made many lifelong friends as well as professional connections through my experiences in BPA,” said Patel

Mian, Patel and Qureshi were all nominated to attend Nationals in May. However, the week of the event interferes with AP exams here at the Park.

“[S]adly I can’t attend this year,” said Qureshi. “Next year, I’ll make sure to try harder and make Nats again.”

At this time, Mian is still planning to attend as, “it is worth it, given that these chances don’t always appear and I may not get this again if I try next year,” he said.

Gill and Patel will also be in attendance and are scheduled to give presentations regarding their strategies used during the Stock Market Challenge.

Business Professionals of America meets on Thursday about twice a month. For any students interested in joining BPA, they are advised to contact one of the business teachers in any of the three schools for further information.

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