FBLA, WHAT IS IT?
Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational association of student members preparing for careers in business or who are just simply interested in learning more about the free enterprise system. FBLA helps students develop leadership abilities, and prepare for entry into, and advancement within, a business or business-related occupation. Members learn how to engage in business enterprise, how to direct the affairs of a group, and how to compete honorably in competitive events. These activities help prepare students to be better employees and better citizens.
The national office address is: FBLA-PBL, Inc., 1912 Association Drive, Reston, VA 22091; the phone number is 800.325.2946. The President and CEO is Ms. Jean Buckley.
The state office address is: Pennsylvania FBLA, P.O. Box 5085, Jersey Shore, PA 17740; the phone number is 570.398.4652. The PA FBLA Executive Director is Mr. Bruce E. Boncal.
FBLA-PBL provides innovative leadership development programs to bring business and education together in a positive working relationship. Participation in FBLA-PBL can have a direct impact on the direction and success of a young person's career. Millions of students have learned through active membership in FBLA-PBL about the world of business and what is expected of them in the workplace. Organizational goals include:
- develop competent, aggressive business leadership
- strengthen the confidence of students in themselves and their work
- create more interest in and understanding of American business enterprise
- encourage members to develop individual projects that contribute to the home, business, and community
- develop character, prepare for useful citizenship, and foster patriotism
- encourage and practice efficient money management
- encourage scholarship and promote school loyalty
- assist students in the establishment of occupational goals
- facilitate the transition from school to work
There are over 270,000 active members in over 12,000 chartered chapters in 50 states, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, U.S. Territories, and Department of Defense Dependent Schools worldwide. In Pennsylvania during the last school year, there were 275 active chapters organized into 28 different regions. There were over 12,331 members during the 2002-03 school year. Membership is open to students in Grades 9-12, and middle-level membership is open to students in Grades 5-8.
Pennsylvania FBLA Memos: published at least four times a year providing up-to-date information on current news, business, leadership, conferences, etc.
Pennsylvania FBLA Policy/Leadership Handbook: a publication developed to provide local chapters with guidelines relative to the operation of FBLA on the local, region, and state levels
Tomorrow's Business Leader: high school student member magazine published four times a year, featuring timely articles on leadership, business, professional topics, and current association news
Hotline: newsletter for advisers, published four times during the school year featuring articles on legislation, trends, local, state, and national programs
State Leadership Workshop: a statewide leadership development workshop for local members and advisers that helps prepare them for a successful FBLA year; held either in August/September/October.
Region Leadership Workshop: a local leadership development workshop sponsored by the local chapters in each of Pennsylvania's 28 regions; usually held in a local high school during October or November
National Fall Leadership Conference: held annually in five geographic regions to provide student members and advisers opportunities to share ideas, reaffirm common goals, and participate in leadership development seminars; held on a Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in November
Region Leadership Conference: a local activity in which members participate in competitive events to qualify for the State Leadership Conference and to elect region officers for the following school year; held at a local high school or on a participating college/community college/business school campus; usually held in January or February
State Leadership Conference: the major event in the PA FBLA year in which qualifying members participate in numerous competitive events, attend leadership development seminars, and campaign for state office; advisers administer the competitive events and participate in professional development sessions; usually held in early to mid April and attended by 2,400 student members and advisers
National Leadership Conference: held annually in a major American city in late June or early July at the conclusion of the year's activities to set the stage for the next school year; qualifying members engage in the competitive events program, participate in leadership development workshops, meet corporate executives, and elect national student officers
FBLA-PBL is headquartered in Reston, Virginia, and is organized on the local, state, and national levels. Local chapters operate with the guidance of educators as advisers. State chapters are guided by executive directors, state advisers, and Department of Education staff members who report to the national organization. In Pennsylvania, the executive director's office is located in Jersey Shore and is supported by an FBLA facilitator at the Department of Education; the conference coordinator in Belle Vernon; ;the state adviser in Hanover; and the competitive events coordinator in Harrisburg.
A national Board of Directors, composed of professional educators, business leaders, and division presidents, sets policy and appoints a President/CEO who employs a national staff and directs association programs. Pennsylvania is governed by its own state Board of Directors that sets policy and appoints an executive director and a conference coordinator to conduct the state chapter's activities.
PA FBLA members elect nine students state officers annually at the state conference. In addition, PA FBLA is organized into 28 different regions, and each is guided by a region adviser elected from among the advisers in that particular region.
FBLA is endorsed by the American Management Association, the American Vocational Association, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National Business Education Association, the National Management Association, the Pennsylvania Department of Education, and the U.S. Department of Education.