NIC students ‘Reach for New Heights' in national leadership conference

Eight North Idaho College student members of Business Professionals of America earned multiple honors at the “Reach for New Heights” 2012 National Leadership Conference in Chicago, which was held April 24-29.

BPA is a national organization that prepares students to succeed in their chosen career. NIC’s BPA chapter members joined college students from across the nation to participate in national-level business skill competitions, workshops and sessions. More than 50 competitive events were offered in a variety of categories.

“NIC students competed with college and university students from across the United States,” said NIC BPA advisor and Computer Applications and Office Technology Instructor Kathie O’Brien. “The quality of the education they receive at NIC is demonstrated by students’ success at this national event.”

Vanesa Braun, of Coeur d’Alene, received a $500 National Officer scholarship, served as the head voting delegate for Idaho and placed in the top 10 in the Administrative Support Team category.

Ashley Chaffin, of Coeur d’Alene, received two first place awards: Desktop Publishing and Web Site Design Team in addition to earning her Adobe Photoshop Certification.

Keifer Hofacker, of Coeur d’Alene, received first place in Web Site Design Team and placed in the top 10 for Information Technology Concepts as well as scoring a perfect 100 percent on the Microsoft Security Certification exam earning him the top prize.

Cindy Kuhn, of Spirit Lake, was named Postsecondary Ambassador of the Year for the second consecutive year, earned the 2012 Service Learning Individual Award and placed in the top 10 in Administrative Support Team. Kuhn also earned Microsoft Certifications in Word 2010 and PowerPoint 2010.

Ryan Maskell, of Coeur d’Alene, placed second in Video Production Team, second in Graphic Design and placed in the top 10 in Desktop Publishing. Maskell also earned two Adobe Certifications: Photoshop and Premier.

Taylar McClure, of Coeur d’Alene, received first place in Web Site Design Team as well as top 10 in Human Resource Management.

Tabatha Taylor, of Hayden, was on the top 10 Administrative Support Team and served as a national voting delegate.
Josie Tennison, of Post Falls, placed second in Video Production Team and third in Presentation Management-Individual.

Braun, Kuhn and McClure were honored at a special reception for those students receiving the Ambassador Torch Award for the highest level of service and dedication. BPA’s Torch Awards program frames and guides a BPA member’s leadership and service to their chapter and community. Students earn points for completing activities in the seven Torch categories: leadership, service, cooperation, knowledge, friendship, love, hope, faith, and patriotism. Kuhn earned the most points of any college student in the country for her campus and community participation and service.

Eight North Idaho College student members of Business Professionals of America were recognized recently by the national organization for their outstanding work. NIC BPA members include, from left: Keifer Hofacker, Ryan Maskell, Ashley Chaffin, Vanesa Braun, Josie Tennison, Peter Rustemeyer (University of Idaho student), Tabatha Taylor and Cindy Kuhn. Front row: Taylar McClure.

For More Information
NIC Computer Applications and Office Technology Instructor Kathie O’Brien, (208) 769-3264 or  

Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2012

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