NEW PHILADELPHIA — A team of Buckeye Career Center students recently placed second in a national competition. The team of Aaron Miller (Computer Technology/New Philadelphia), Nathan Correll (Computer Technology/Claymont), and Michael Koerber (Computer Technology/New Philadelphia) competed in the Network Design Team competition at the Business Professionals of America National Leadership Conference in Anaheim, CA May 1-5.

Earlier this school year, Computer Technology instructor Bill Alexander asked his students to design a hypothetical computer networking system for a bank and its branches. Miller, Correll, and Koerber, placed at regionals with this project, later qualifying for state, and eventually nationals. The students say they never imagined they would make it so far. "We didn’t know it was going to be this big. We thought it was just a class project. I thought it would be cool to get on stage in the top 10 but that’s as far as I expected to get," said Miller. Correll is still shocked with the results as all three students are still learning about network systems. 

"Considering we are juniors, it was difficult to start but we managed to find it easier later. Between regionals and state, we completely overhauled our network. It felt good. We felt accomplished to make it there," said Correll.

The three are looking forward to competing again during their senior year at BCC. "We met a lot of people and learned a lot so now we know what to do in the real world and for our next competition," said Koerber. Alex Mann (Claymont), a senior Computer Technology student, placed fourth in the nation in System Administration with Microsoft.

BCC students joined nearly 6,000 other conference delegates from across the nation who gathered in California to compete in business skills competitions. They also attended leadership development workshops while learning from leading business professionals. Business Professionals of America is a career and technical student organization for students preparing for careers in business, finance and management, information systems, and other related fields.