The Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) business club at the Manassas Campus is a student-run organization facilitated by the Student Life under the guidance of Marcie Schreibman and Cari Dresser. The club has approximately 20 student members who have paid national and state dues of $20. To assist the club with events and programming, PBL has three faculty advisors – Accounting Professor and Communication Technologies and Social Sciences Interim Dean Barbara Hopkins; Manassas Interim Honors Chair, Economics Instructor and Assistant Dean Mary Ellen Ryan; and Student Success Specialist Alisa Berry (also a PBL alumna).
On April 5, the club sponsored an event titled, “Business on the Lawn,” but due to the extreme cold weather that day, it was re-titled “Business Right Adjacent to the Lawn” and was held inside the Howsmon Cafeteria. There were several guest speakers running workshops from various organizations including the Prince William Chamber of Commerce. Topics included interviewing skills, NOVA internships, networking skills, resume building and dressing for success.
When asked about their goal of this event, PBL was mainly supposed to be an outreach to the students at NOVA to teach them about the importance of business etiquette and how to secure a job when applying for one.
Also on that day, the PBL sponsored a faculty and staff Chili Cook-Off that was voted upon by the students as a way to encourage their participation. The faculty/staff contributed four dishes of homemade chili while the club handled baking cornbread that included vegan options. Alongside them, the Hard Times Café located, in Manassas, donated trays of their signature cornbread to show that they support the promotion of workplace readiness skills.
Activities that PBL has also put on this year include “A Battle of the Bands,” where local bands competed and were judged by guest judges that specialized in music. Six bands competed with Soldiers of Suburbia as the overall winner and Red Version as the crowd favorite. Another activity was “Take Back the Mic for March of Dimes: Prematurity Awareness” event which spread awareness of premature birth and the effects it has on families. On April 14, PBL also had “An Equal Pay Day Bake Sale” that highlighted wage differentials in the workforce based on gender and race.
Next semester, PBL also plans on hosting a cancer walk titled “Walk the Walk” in honor of all the faculty members that have passed away from cancer, including past Manassas business professors Ronald Mason and Laura Bhadra. PBL plans on walking from the Manassas Campus through to the Manassas Battlefield and back with light refreshments and giveaways for participants.