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Northeast business students earn national honors at PBL “experience”

Northeast business students earn national honors at PBL “experience”

NORFOLK, Neb. – Northeast Community College business students have walked away with national recognition during a competition against their peers from other two-year and four-year colleges and universities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

Six members of the College’s Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) Team placed in several areas in the 2020 National PBL State Leadership Experience (NLE) and Business Competition after showcasing skillsets they gained in college.

Angela Shaffer, Northeast business instructor and PBL Club adviser, said due to COVID-19 concerns, the NLE and Business Competition were held virtually.

“Students were able to compete individually or with their team using a webcam and their computer or smartphone. The competitors were given a real-world business case study and had to design a recommended course of action and then record and upload their presentations.” Shaffer said. “The virtual conference had over 900 competitors from across the nation and over 1,200 attendees. I was so glad the event was able to go ahead, even though it was virtual. My students stepped up to the challenge and produced impressive results. “

The Northeast students earned four national awards; which includes one second place honor. They qualified for the national PBL competition after claiming first place honors at the Nebraska PBL Conference earlier this year.

In the competition, Morgan Haschke, Spalding, Randall Nunez, Norfolk, Joshua Santiago, Norfolk, placed second in hospitality management. Haschke was joined by Brittney Dederman, Norfolk, in earning fifth place in business decision making. Austin Bruzek, Norfolk, and Meredith Christensen, Holdrege, were awarded fifth place in business presentation, while Bruzek earned 10th in management analysis and decision making.   

The Northeast team was among 1,239 registered attendees and 952 competitors to participate in this year’s NLE.

Shaffer said Phi Beta Lambda focuses on developing leadership, communication and team skills in its members as well as giving members an opportunity to meet and network with other PBL members at the local, state and national levels.

PBL places an emphasis on helping students transition to the business world,” she said. “There are approximately 11,000 PBL members on college campuses across the country.

Also, during this year’s event, Hunter Bergman, a Northeast graduate from Neligh, earned second place in the Future Business Executive and fourth in the Job Interview categories. Bergman, who now attends the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, was named to Who’s Who in PBL. The award honors exemplary PBL members who have made outstanding contributions to the association at the local, state, and national levels.