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FCCLA - The Experience of a Lifetime

This post submitted by Caroline Kirby, 2009-10 National Vice President of STAR Events

In a few weeks I will be moving into my dorm room at the University of Missouri-Columbia. As I look back on my senior year I realize that I was blessed with an amazing year filled with great memories, friends, and experiences of a lifetime. What made my senior year so great and unique from most people? Being a member of the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America National Executive Council is what did it! This past year has been an incredible and life changing experience that I will never forget.

As a national officer, I traveled over 22,000 miles including Washington, D.C. three times; Louisville, Kentucky; Chicago, Illinois twice; Columbus, Ohio; and several towns and cities in Missouri. Every place I traveled to throughout my year, I was able to make a difference in the organization whether it was talking to chapter members about getting involved or performing a skit in front of 6,100 people at National Leadership Conference. I have truly grown not only as a leader, but as a person who is ready to take on the world and everything it throws at me. I developed essential skills such as communication, teamwork and responsibility, but I have also learned how to travel by myself, what to do when your flight is delayed and cancelled, and how to pass the time when you stay in a hotel room by yourself. I can take all of this with me as I close this chapter in my life and begin a new one.

Thank you to all Missouri FCCLA members, advisers, and alumni who have made this year even more incredible. Without your continuous support I would not have the opportunities I have had in FCCLA. I would encourage any member to run for a national office in this organization, but it is a huge time commitment that leads to stressful times, late nights, early mornings, many hours spent on making up homework, and possibly missing out on school events. But even with those disadvantages, it is still one of the greatest and worthwhile experiences that I have gone through. The people you meet and the opportunities you have, make the stressful times much better.

As I closed this amazing year in Chicago at the 2010 National Leadership Conference with nine of my best friends, I realized how lucky I was to have such a great senior year filled with stressful and great memories that will help me lead the life meant for me.

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