July 2018 – Four Holyoke Family, Career and Community Leaders of America members joined more than 7,500 FCCLA student leaders, members, and advisers at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, GA June 27 – July 2 to participate in the annual FCCLA National Leadership Conference (NLC). Chaperoned by adviser Karen Ortner, Kyra Loutensock competed in Chapter Service Project Display, while Lauren Bergner, Savannah Burris and Makenzie Martin competed in Chapter in Review Portfolio. All members brought home gold medals in their respective events, with Loutensock scoring a 96.66/100 by the event’s rubric and the Chapter in Review team earning a 99/100.
The conference provided Holyoke students opportunities to come together for energizing learning while listening to inspiring speakers, expanding leadership skills, sharpening talents, and exploring career pathways. The theme of this year’s conference was “Inspired by FCCLA”, which inspired attendees to make the right choices and commit themselves to making a positive impact within their families, schools, FCCLA, and communities.
"Our National Leadership Conference was a great success this year, with a record-setting attendance of over 7,500 members, advisers, partners and guests. During the past week we've watched thousands of students come together and realize their full potential through competition, career training, and workshops. The relationships developed and training experienced during this conference have empowered students to go into their schools and communities and make a difference, bringing with them the values and passions FCCLA brings to our members," said Sandy Spavone, executive director of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America.
Ortner was extremely pleased with Holyoke’s members at NLC. “They were a lot of fun and a class act all the way through, which isn’t always easy with the long days and nights at Nationals,” said Ortner. “They earned this great opportunity and those gold medals. Our community should be very proud.”
In addition to competing, participating in the FCCLA Gala/Silent Disco and hearing from multiple speakers such as entrepreneur Johnny Cupcakes and Chick-Fil-A CEO Dan Cathy, members also had much opportunity for site-seeing. Atlanta attractions enjoyed by members included the World of Coca-Cola, Georgia Aquarium, Center for Civil Rights museum, CNN studio headquarters, Zoo Atlanta, Atlantic Station and Bodies: The Exhibition.
Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA), is a dynamic and effective national student organization that helps young men and women become leaders and address important personal, family, work, and societal issues through Family and Consumer Sciences education. FCCLA has more than 160,000 members and more than 5,300 chapters from 49 state associations, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
FCCLA: The Ultimate Leadership Experience is unique among youth organizations because its programs are planned and run by members, and it’s the only career and technical in-school student organization with a central focus on family. Participation in national programs and chapter activities helps members become strong leaders in families, careers, and communities.