WORTHINGTON — Worthington High School senior Victor Villalobos won second place in extemporaneous speech at the state BPA (Business Professionals of America) competition, which qualified him to compete at nationals May 7 in Washington, D.C.

Extemporaneous speech, Villalobos explained, tests a BPA-er's business knowledge and ability to think critically under pressure.

A number of questions related to business and ethics are put into a pool, and each competitor draws two. The student then has 10 minutes to write a speech between two and four minutes long that answers one of the questions.

Villalobos spoke about the question, "What is more important in life: making mistakes or doing it right the first time?" he said. He's in favor of making mistakes.

In the ethics questions, memorized knowledge isn't as much of a factor, Villalobos said.

"Sometimes the answer just comes to you," he said. "Luckily, that's what happened for me."

His second-place ranking will carry him to the national competition in a few weeks — a first for the senior.

"I'm nervous in a good way," he said of the upcoming championship.

Traveling to the event has a price, and BPA is looking for ways to raise funds, said faculty advisor Penny Troe.

WHS BPA will sell concessions at two March events: the Wild Turkey Basketball Shoot Out March 21 and King Turkey Day Donkey Basketball March 26. Proceeds from sales will help finance travel to nationals.