My FCCLA Story
By Shelby Lake, VP of Development
Summer was over, and school was beginning again. I didn’t know what I wanted to do in middle school, but I was excited for a new adventure. As the first day started, I heard there was an FCCLA ice cream social. Just like a normal middle schooler, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity for FREE ice cream! I went and was hooked on FCCLA right away. There was an Indiana state officer there, and I was in awe of the way she carried herself and wore the red blazer.
After learning more about FCCLA, I decided to run for a chapter office. I was so surprised when I was elected as the vice president! This was the first big responsibility I’d ever had. The next year, I was elected as the chapter president. These two years taught me leadership skills that I still use today and will continue to use for the rest of my life.
The summer of eighth grade, I traveled to Nashville, TN, for my first National Leadership Conference. I could tell as soon as I walked into the hotel that I was with FCCLA family. Walking into the general session ballroom gave me chills. The music was playing and states were having cheer offs. As soon as the national officers appeared on stage, my mouth dropped and I was in total shock. I knew right then and there that I wanted to become a national officer.
I attended all of my chapter’s events and volunteered for more than I should have my freshman year. Then I decided to run for a state office. I had studied and prepared for the screening day months before, which helped to calm my nerves.
At state conference, I completed my first public speaking experience in front of a large crowd and had multiple interviews with voting delegates. When it was time for the results of the election, I was elected to the team as the vice-president of district of coordination. My first year as a state officer is one I will never forget. I grew as both a leader and as a person that year.
Then I decided to run for a position on the National Executive Council for my junior year. Although I was not elected, I continued to serve on my state’s executive council. I learned from my mistakes and decided to run again, which ended in a different outcome than the previous year. I am so excited to now be on the NEC!
From my years in FCCLA, I have learned to never give up. When something doesn’t go the way you want, you get back up and try again.
I thank FCCLA for all of my wonderful and memorable experiences!
Shelby Lake, VP of Development