Warsaw Freshman, Daughenbaugh Makes School History As First FBLA Nationals Competitor


A determined freshman made school history as the first high school student from Warsaw to go to FBLA Nationals, according to Bethany Siegel, the sponsor for the Warsaw FBLA chapter.

FBLA stands for Future Business Leaders of America, which prepares students for the professional world through connections and exposure to opportunities they can use after high school. This includes academic competitions, educational programs, and presentations by local business owners about running a business, and the different careers students can pursue. Skills honed can include learning the basics of business, money management, public speaking, and business leadership.

Maya Daughenbaugh, a freshman at Warsaw High School, is an FBLA member who competed at the District and State levels for the opportunity to go to Nationals. Only the top four individuals in each category move on to Nationals, Daughenbaugh placed third. Daughenbaugh is competing in the event “Introduction to Public Speaking,” which is open only to freshmen and sophomores. Daughenbaugh said she would “speak about which skills are essential to getting your first job.” Daughenbaugh will travel to Orlando, Florida, at the end of this month.

The trip has a cost of around $4,000. Siegel said, “Because of the turnaround time between State and Nationals, fundraising was very limited.”

Siegel has started a fundraiser to help Daughenbaugh. Donations can be made to the high school. Daughenbaugh is excited about going, and she said that as a very sociable person, connecting with the other competitors was one of the things she looked forward to the most.

When asked about Daughenbaugh, Siegel said, “Maya is a great kid. I’ve never had a kid as a freshman work so hard for this.”

Siegel noted that “her speech was phenomenal,” and that she cannot imagine what she will be able to accomplish in the future based on her accomplishments as a freshman.

When asked her thoughts on FBLA, Daughenbaugh stated “FBLA is pretty awesome because you get to connect with so many people.”

She also said that her values and skills have been sharpened and that she has become a better person because of it.

This is not the first amazing achievement of Daughenbaugh. Her initiative turned the heads of Harvard and earned her the opportunity to go to the Future Leaders in Public Service (FLIPS) event, a two-day conference on Harvard’s campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This conference had high school students learning about government, education, the nonprofit sector, and other sectors.

Daughenbaugh’s drive and work ethic have carved out for her a place as the first Warsaw FBLA student to go to Nationals.

What will be the next challenge Daughenbaugh will tackle?