Students presenting for BPA

Under competitions from the Business Professionals of America, students like  get to work together and hone their skills through presentations and projects. Photo by Afiq Hisham 

GREAT FALLS - Hundreds of students travelled to the Electric City’s own CMR High, showing off their skills in one of the region's biggest business competitions.

From producing their own broadcasts, to finding creative solutions for small business problems, close to 300 students went head to head to prove they were the best in their fields.

"I love BPA in general, so competing is very fun for me," said CMR High Senior Amiya Williams, who’s prepared for months alongside her small business management team.

Under competitions from the Business Professionals of America, students like Amiya and fellow Senior Quinn Soltesz get to work together and hone their skills, as they continue making steps towards their future careers.

"I just had a wide scope of learning with BPA,” said Quinn, one of Amiya’s teammates. “Like I've done so many different types of events that I've just kind of absorbed different types of knowledge in the business world."

For first time Volunteer Judge Amy Dardis, the school's dedication to their students through BPA came across as a surprise.

"It's great to see that these kids are so engaged in that, and they want to participate in something like this," said Dardis.   

With all the time needed to prepare and coordinate presentations, products or strategies, there's plenty of focus on teamwork.

"There's a lot of different areas for you to work on,” said Amiya, who’s been involved with BPA for her entire high school career. “So [you have to make] sure everyone understands their part within the role of the whole entire presentation."

On top of all that, meeting together for the competition also gives students a chance to connect, not just with mentors, but friends old and new.

"I've met so many people I have great connections with," said Amiya.

The chosen winners get to compete on the state level in the coming months, but win or lose,  both Amiya and Quinn said they want to have fun, while introducing younger students to the scene.

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