Business Professionals of America

Business Professionals of America, (BPA), is a career and technical student organization that is headquartered in Columbus, OH. BPA aims to develop leadership, academic, and technological skills in the workplace among students and leaders within the community. BPA's colors are navy blue, tan, and red.

At the beginning of meetings or other events, BPA members recite their pledge: "We are met in a spirit of friendship and goodwill as we prepare for productive lives in business and office careers. We work together to develop professionalism and leadership through Business Professionals of America and pledge our loyalty to our nation."

BPA's motto is: "Today’s students, Tomorrow’s business professionals". [ National Site]

Types of Awards

BPA rewards members in three categories:
*Competitive Events: Members are rewarded for high placement (dependent on contest) in competitive events.

*Special Recognition Awards: Includes Air Force Recruiting Salute Award, Community Relief Service Award, BPA Marketing and Public Relation, Chapter Activities Award of Excellence, Community Action, Outstanding Service Award, Entrepreneurship Exploration, Hall of Fame and Outstanding Service Awards, Member Recruiter, Merit Scholar, National Center Capital Improvements Campaign, Safety Awareness, Special Olympics, Environmental Action Award, and The Professional Cup. []

*Torch Awards: Members are rewarded for excellence in seven categories such as Patriotism, Leadership, and Love, Hope, and Faith. []

Competitive Events

Many different types of competitions, known as "events," are part of BPA. "Open Events" are electronically scored multiple choice tests. Other events can be computer-based, judged, or test-based and include such varied areas as Interview, PC Repairs and Troubleshooting, Administrative Support Team, Presentation Management, and Website Design Team. []

National Leadership Conference

Every year BPA hosts a National Leadership Conference (NLC) with over 6,000 students from across the nation.

The 2009 National Leadership Conference will be held in Dallas, Texas. The theme is: "Blaze New Trails"

Future National Leadership Conference Sites

*2009: Dallas, Texas
*2010: Anaheim, California
*2011: Washington D.C.
*2012: Chicago, Illinois
*2013: Orlando, Florida

History of Business Professionals of America

*1963 Vocational Education Act was passed. The need for a student organization for students enrolled in career/technical office/business programs was recognized.

*1964 American Vocational Association conducted a study of 43 states indicating that 67% of the state vocational education supervisors wanted a career/technical youth group for students in office/business programs.

*1965 Another study confirms the ’64 study findings; State supervisors meet to develop guidelines

*1966 In July, the Vocational Office Education Clubs of America (VOECA) was formed by the states of Iowa, Kansas, and Wisconsin. In August, VOECA convened a meeting of youth group representatives to decide the most effective means to implement the office occupations youth group. After intensive effort, articles of incorporation were filed for the Office Education Association (OEA). The first three states to affiliate were Iowa, Kansas, and Wisconsin.

*1971 A national office was established for the Office Education Association in Columbus, Ohio, and the Board of Trustees approved the Alumni Division.

*1973 The first full-time Executive Director of OEA was employed.

*1982 The present National Center at 5454 Cleveland Avenue, Columbus, Ohio was purchased.

*1983 Dedication ceremonies for the new National Center were conducted in July.

*1984 Board of Trustees commissioned the Market One firm of Columbus, Ohio to do a marketing study of the OEA. The resulting long-range marketing plan recommended reform of the national image of the OEA.

*1988 Image reform recommendations of the marketing study were implemented—the OEA became Business Professionals of America.

*1992 The National Center is paid off and the mortgage is burned in a ceremony at the National Leadership Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio.

*1998-2002 Delaware, Florida, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas pilot a New BPA Middle Level program.

*2002 The Middle Level Program was approved by the Board of Trustees.

*2003 The Middle Level Program was approved by BPA Corporate. The BPA Middle Level Division is born.

*2004 Middle Level Division members participate in the National Leadership Conference.

External links

* [ Business Professionals of America Official Website]

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