FCCLA to compete at state competition

Second year in a row all teams advance

Karli Geyer, Guest Writer

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For the second year in a row, Devine FCCLA has made history by having all teams that competed advance to the state competition. Five teams earned first place and one earned second at the Region V Competition in Corpus Christi.

“Especially with it being my second year, it was super exciting having all of our regional teams making it to state. We perceive them to do well and move on even further than state.” FCCLA advisor Emily Cunningham said. “It’s a good experience getting to see the children excel in what they do best.”

Amy Bailey and Charlize Benavidez helped organize this year’s conference as Region V officers. Some of their jobs included speaking during the sessions and running different competitions.

“I got to meeting the counsel woman who was the representative for Corpus Christi,” Benavidez said. “I had an awesome time because I love meeting new people and learning about where they are from.”

To continue on as leaders, they tried out again but for new positions. Benavidez earned the position of VP of Public Relations and Bailey’s new title is VP of Peer Involvement.

“I ran for this position because it seemed like an interesting way to get involved in the Region,” Bailey said. “It was all so appealing to me so I figured this job would be perfect for me.”

Emily and Abigail Kohlleppel placed first with their project “Farm to Classroom” in the Illustrated Talk category. The purpose of their project is to educate community members and students about farming and its importance.

“All of our past projects involved bring awareness of certain topics to children,”Abigail Kohlleppel said. “Our dad is a farmer and there seems to be a lack of knowledge of farming within the community and that is what really inspires us.”

This is the third year that the Kohlleppel girls have competed together. All three times they have had stiff competition but have managed to place second twice and first once.

“I wouldn’t want to have done my project with anyone else,” Emily said. “Being sisters and sharing a project has its benefits because we are able to practice whenever and don’t have to worry about meeting up.”

Braden Harrell and Caimee Fowler got first place. Their project, “Kindness Cures”, was presented in the Interpersonal Communications category. Brady and Caimee used this project to get involved in the community and show kindness to everyone.

“We presented to the freshman class and went to multiple restaurants and left flyers,” Harrell said. “We left smarties with the flyers at the restaurants for people to take for encouragement. We also put up a bulletin board to promote kindness by placing sticky notes with positive thoughts on them.”

Harrell and Fowler decided to participate in STAR evets together as a couple. They were able to work together and show everyone how much they care about each other and the community.

“We were tired of people being mean to us, so we decided to do this together. For the most part, it was easier because we were dating. We already spend so much time together so it was easy to work on it. I wanted to do it last year, and this year he could relate to the problem so we did it together.”

Seniors Cassie Wood and Amanda Richardson also competed at the Regional level where they placed first. The topic of their project is “Fostering and Children” which they presented as a part of the Illustrated Talk Occupational section. This topic focuses on getting more families to foster children and to help the children know that they are still loved and not forgotten.

“We decided to do the topic of fostering because my parents have become foster parents and have brought in foster children,” Richardson said. “We had a guest speaker who works for a fostering organization come and talk to the children. She was also trying to recruit families for fostering. I think it’s so important and more families should foster.”

With a project about “Healthy vs Unhealthy” relationships, Amanda Byrd received first place in the Interpersonal Communications. Her purpose of this project was to spread awareness about unhealthy relationships and what they look like.

“We were talking about unhealthy relationships in my FCS class and Miss Cunningham encouraged me to use it as my STAR Event project,” Byrd said. “This has helped me realize that I have to be careful and cautious in all relationships. Most teenagers are pretty oblivious when it comes to things like this.”


Placing second was Rebecca Fowler with her project R.F INC that she presented in the recycling and redesign occupational category. She chose this topic because she loves fashion and I loves to create something new from something old.

“I did this project on my own because I like to know that I am getting the job done,” Fowler said. “I’ve wanted to do this project since freshman year, but I wanted to make sure that I had enough experience with this topic.”

Along with the STAR event competitors, Spotlight on Projects also placed. Lorena Chavera and Ismael Vera received 2nd, and Rebecca Fowler and Kaesyn Mann placed 3rd.

“This is our first year to have members participate,” FCCLA advisor Madeline Stuebing said. “Both of our teams have worked extremely hard on their projects and I’m super happy for them.”

The Devine chapter received the 4A Membership Increase award. This award is given to the chapter that has increased their number of members the most in one year.

“I’m really proud of the leadership team for really pushing and encouraging people to join,” President Emily Kohlleppel said. “It helps us because the bigger we are, the more attention we are able to get and the more we are recognized.”

As well as that, Devine also received the Service Learning award. A group of members collects pictures and puts them on a poster that is displayed at regionals. All who attend go around to each poster set up by all of the participating chapters and vote on which chapter did the best community activities.

“Anything we do wouldn’t be possible without the community. They always have our back and are constantly supporting us,” Emily said. “As the Devine chapter, we push for community involvement. We are doing our best, and our main goal is to make a difference.”

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