Raihan Sayeed is a student at Loyola University, where he is currently focused on premedical and business studies in hopes to one day become a doctor. As a high school student Ray Sayeed was very involved in various organizations including Key Club and the Future Business Leaders of America.

The Future Business Leaders of America – Phi Beta Lambda is a non-profit organization that works to prepare students for business and business-related careers. The group was first established in 1937 and is currently made up of local chapters run by business teachers, school officials, businesspeople, and members of local communities. The high school division, the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), is composed of 215,000 members.

To give a recent example of the benefits high school students receive from FBLA membership, consider the Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree coordinated in Kinnelon, New Jersey this past October by members of the Future Business Leaders of America club of Kinnelon High School. Members of FBLA worked after school to organize and coordinate activities such as bake sales, pumpkin carving, and face painting. Prior to the event, the students promoted the jamboree with fliers at supermarkets and on local billboards and also discussed the event on the KHS morning show. Through this event, members of the FBLA are able to get a taste for the business world by learning how tasks are broken into corporate functions and how departments work together successfully.

Raihan Sayeed of Loyola University has served on the Future Business Leaders of America. Future Business Leaders of America, or FBLA, is the high school division of the non-profit education association Future Business Leaders of America – Phi Beta Lambda (FBLA-PBL). As the largest business career development organization for students in the world, FBLA-PBL has over a quarter million student members preparing for business-related careers. The association also contains the FBLA – Middle Level division for middle school students, Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) for postsecondary students, and the Professional division for alumni, business professionals, and educators. FBLA-PBL hosts and sponsors a number of events, conferences, and competitions across the United States each year. These events, such as the National Leadership Conference (NLC), allow students to test their business knowledge and skills, develop leadership abilities, forge professional connections, and participate in motivational and career planning workshops. As a non-profit organization, FBLA-PBL relies on membership dues, corporate contributions, and grants for funding. FBLA-PBL offers scholarship opportunities for its student members. About the author: Raihan “Ray” Sayeed studies business and pre-med at Loyola University in Chicago. As the Vice President of his high school’s chapter of the Future Business Leaders of America, Ray Sayeed was an elected speaker at the State FBLA Conference and was awarded a certificate of merit for his work in marketing.

Now a current freshman at Loyola University Chicago, Raihan Sayeedserved as the Vice President of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) chapter at his high school. Founded in 1940 and headquartered in Reston, Virginia, the FBLA is an American career organization that primarily involves national high school students. In addition, the FBLA also maintains ties with the collegiate level Phi Beta Lambda society, forming the full organizational acronym of FBLA-PBL. With more than 250,000 members across the United States, the FBLA-PBL is the largest student business organization in the country.Established in 1937 by the head of the prestigious Teachers College of Columbia University, the FBLA earned sponsorship from the National Business Education Association in 1940. After creating its first chapter in Johnson City, Tennessee, the FBLA authorized its first state chapter in Iowa shortly thereafter. By 1994, the FBLA had established separate divisions for middle school students, college students, and current professionals.

Today, the FBLA-PBL holds annual competitions that cover topics such as public speaking, technology, and business. Specific competitions include Public Speaking, Impromptu Speaking, Website Development, Accounting, Management Decision Making, and Technology Concepts. The majority of individual competitions involve a multiple choice Scantron test or public speaking. Team competitions feature three unique structures: a two- or three-person team that submits a written solution to a problem, a two- or three-person team that submits a report or website, and a four- or five-person team that takes a test and averages the scores. Winners of competitions move up the regional ladder, progressing from local competition to state competition and eventually arriving at the national level. Winners at the national competition earn a spot on stage at the Awards of Excellence Program at the National Leadership Conference.

In addition to the various competitions sponsored by the FBLA-PBL, the organization also organizes State Leadership Conferences (SLC). During the SLCs, students participate in workshops and also have the opportunity to run for state officer positions. At National Leadership Conferences, held in major cities across the country during the early summer, participating students attend seminars, square off in the national competition, and run for national officer positions. As the FBLA’s elected speaker and leader, Raihan Sayeed represented the Lincoln-Way School District at the Business leaders annual conference held in March, 2010, in Decatur, Illinois. He was awarded the Certificate of Merit for second place in marketing.

To learn more about the FBLA-PBL, visit the website at fbla-pbl.org.