Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation registered with the Office of Secretary of State in the state of Washington. Washington State FBLA is an affiliate of Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda, Inc., headquartered in Reston, VA. As the recognized leadership component of Business Education in this state, FBLA is an integral part of the business education/ marketing pathway.
Our mission is “to bring business and education together in a positive working relationship through innovative leadership and career development programs” in the preparation of students for careers in business and business-related fields. Membership in FBLA in Washington is open to students in grades 7-12 throughout the state.
The FBLA concept was developed in 1937 by Dr. Hamden L. Forkner of Columbia University. The first high school chapter was chartered in Johnson City, Tennessee, in 1942. The Washington State Chapter was chartered in 1965, and established as a non-profit corporation in 1985.
Is our mission realistic?
Yes. The mission is our commitment to the future. It is essential that education provides the needs of business and sends young people into the working world with adequate to advanced preparation and skills.
What is FBLA doing to ensure our mission?
In addition to providing applied learning through real business experiences, FBLA enjoys mutually rewarding relationships with many businesses and associations. Our business partners include Red Lion Hotels, Washington Society of CPAs, Washington Business Week, Washington Interscholastic Activities Association, Seattle Mariners, Tacoma Rainiers, Portland Trailblazers, Hands On Sports & Entertainment, Association of Government Accountants, March of Dimes, Spina Bifida of Washington, KPMG, United States Navy, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). Our current Board of Directors enjoys the professional expertise of representatives from business and education. We’re listening to the needs of business and industry and incorporating their message into the educational environment.
Continuing education for teachers is provided through Washington State Business Education Association (WSBEA), FBLA, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) to help teachers integrate FBLA leadership activities into their curriculum. Through these specialized programs, highly capable and employable high school students and graduates consistently enter today’s working society.
FBLA exceeds the expectation of the U.S. Department of Education to “provide as an integral part of the instructional program additional opportunities for students to develop vocational and career supportive competencies and promote civic and personal responsibilities.”
In this age of rapidly-changing technology, it has been necessary to expand our programs, offering more competitive events in up-to-date technology areas such as Web site development, computer programming, graphic design, and others. These, in addition to established areas such as accounting, communication, marketing, entrepreneurship, community service, and approximately 50 additional areas, exemplify our commitment to bringing the best in business to thousands of bright future-oriented young people with realistic aspirations and direction.
FBLA is a unique student organization
As adults, we belong to our particular professional associations that provide us with current information in our fields through conferences, networking, learning, and career advancement opportunities. Similar opportunities provide the professional edge for students through their membership in Future Business Leaders of America. They develop leadership skills through planning and participation in various classroom activities such as community service, development of speaking and presentation skills, conference attendance, skill application, networking opportunities, and travel.