FCCLA conference deemed ‘successful’

Taryn Robinson, Sports Editor

During the three days of travel that Manhattan High School’s Family, Career and Community Leaders of America, junior Connor Andreason was awarded third place in culinary knife skills nationally. He also received a $20,000 scholarship if he chooses to go to Sullivan University. On the plane and car ride home, the other seven students, club sponsor Heide Rippert and Andreason, were all excited for his big win.

“Before the ceremony I was just nervous about going up on the stage by myself because the other juniors that got awarded didn’t come to DC,” Andreason said. “But after I felt very good partly because my whole group and some new friends cheered, maybe a little too loud for me, but also it made me feel like the work I have been putting into all these skills have started paying off.”

Along with Andreason, the seven other members of MHS’s FCCLA club flew to Washington, D.C. last Wednesday through Sunday, to attend the annual, nation-wide conference.

“There were a lot of people that were from FCCLA all over the country, and [we’d all participate in] meetings every day,” junior Josh O’Connor said.

On day one, the members listened and talked about their own experiences at MHS in conversations addressed by the officials at the event.

“We talked to representatives from each of our states about two topics, one was Perkins funding, which is the funding for FCCLA and Family And Consumer Science classes,” O’Connor said.  “The other is called Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids.”

Along with talking about these timely and relevant topics, the students also got to talk with people who represent the state of Kansas. 

“We actually met with Tracey Mann and some of Dr. [Roger] Marshall’s staffers and talked to them about those topics,” O’Connor said.

On day two, the group participated in a leadership conference.

“They did workshops and had speakers and so forth that they could go listen to and visit,” Rippert said.

And on day three, the eight students ventured further than just their hotel where the conference took place.

“It was fun getting [the] chance to sightsee,” O’Connor said. “We saw all the big monuments; we walked around the Capitol, we went inside some of the senator buildings and we got to see the White House.”

Looking ahead, MHS’s FCCLA team is already preparing for their next events and competitions.

“I have students now working on Star events, some of them will compete in Star events, which is our main competition at Districts and then hope to go on to State as some of the events like our culinary events will go straight to State they won’t compete at Districts first, and if they win at State, then they are able to go on to Nationals,” Rippert said. “Nationals state will be in Wichita in April and the Nationals will be this summer in San Diego, California.”