FCSTN Legislative Workshop
FCS Future Teachers Dinner
The FCSTN Legislative Workshop went off without a hitch on Wednesday, February 13th in Lincoln at the State Capitol. The day started with Senator Rick Kolowski talking to the group about his career path and priorities for education this legislative session. He explained by the tanning bill is one of the bills he is proposing this year, but his actual priority bill is LB 619 which requires a health insurance plan to pay for mental health services provided in a school or educational setting. Senator Kolowksi has been a favorite sponsoring senator for us because he is open, honest and communicates well to the students and teachers alike.
After Senator Kolowski spoke, the Attorney General’s Director of Communications came to talk about the responsibilities of their office in carrying out the laws passed by the Legislature and how many divisions they employ to keep up. Suzanne Gage shared about the different Bureaus in their office including Criminal, Consumer Protection, Agriculture, Environment and National Resources, Legal Services, and Civil Litigation. Their office also investigates issues related to human trafficking, tobacco enforcement, victim assistance, concealed carry, Medicaid fraud, and safe communities. One of the community service messages coming out within the next few months includes more information about human trafficking and scams targeting elderly. Suzanne informed the group that she is also Governor Kay Orr’s daughter (fun fact.)
Students and teachers also participated in a tour of the capitol, completing a scavenger hunt of the architectural and historical elements, then moving into the Legislative Chamber to observe the legislative process and be recognized.
The luncheon was held in the Governor’s Mansion with additional guests attending, including Senator John Lowe (pictured with the Kearney High students), Senator Wendy DeBoer (pictured with the Omaha Northwest students), Senator Suzanne Geist from Waverly, Senator Tom Brandt from Exeter-Milligan, and Senator Bruce Bostelman from Howells. Additional FCCLA officers that attended included Cali Jorgensen and Caitlin Murphy. Savanna Young and Eliza Donley, two UNL FCS education students also attended. A total of 39 advisers and students and 10 senators were scheduled to attend.
2019 Workshop Participants:
Exeter-Milligan--Mary Lou Vossler with Daisy Kanode, Georgia Meyer & Caitlin Murphy
Howells-Dodge--Marla Prusa with Harley Williams
Kearney HS--Jennifer Cramer with Emily Hagemann and Milli Ciprian
Kenzie Burnham with Leslie Aspen, Ivan Molina, and Joselinne Gomez
Logan View--Patricia Kassmeier with Shaylin Daugherty & Preston Kotik
Milford--Joyce Potthoff with Katie Patton, FCCLA State President
Omaha NW--Kali Lenhoff with Pu Meh, Manal Suliman, and Ajok Mapior
Pierce--Angie Brodersen with Sydney Erickson
Plainview--Ronita Jacobsen with Calir Jorgensen (student teacher) and Jesica Schaefer
Twin River--Britton Andreason with Irelynd Pearson & Alexis Cherry
UNL--Sheree Moser with Savanna Young & Eliza Donley
Waverly--Mallory Gregory with Zane Piening, Madison Schwarzenbach & Liz Larsen
The 4th Annual Future FCS Teacher Dinner was held at the Hilton Garden Inn in Lincoln on Monday, April 8th. Ten FCS teachers brought 10 students who have expressed interest in becoming a Family and Consumer Sciences teacher after graduating from high school. The participants included:
Teachers & Students Attending:
Centennial Public Schools (Utica)
St. Edward Public Schools
Leigh High School
Platteview Public Schools
Waverly High School
Scottsbluff High School
Neligh-Oakdale Public Schools
Kearney High School
Mullen High School
Aurora High School
The program included a welcome and introductions, emceed by Professor Sheree Moser from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). Thirty-six people were present, including college faculty, students, FCS teachers and students from all over Nebraska. College faculty and students in attendance included Dr. Lorie Hunn from Chadron State College and Dr. Carol Erwin from Wayne State College. Professor Moser had 7 students from UNL attending (Kelly Huenink, Eliza Donley, Ciera Bremer, Ashley Schumacher, Fatima Al-Waely, Abbie Boiko, and Carmen Paniagua), Dr. Hunn had three (Mikaela Franzen, Cole Martinez, and Cheyenne Ryan) and Dr. Erwin had three (Jamie Janousek, Toni Wiese, and Kassi Broman). The college students sat at the tables to talk about, where they are from, their program and why they are majoring in FCS education. After dinner the program included information about FCS teacher shortages in Nebraska, what each institution looked like, and contact information for each professor. Students shared why they were interested in FCS education and where they were planning on going to college.
Two of the participants received honors at the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Leadership Conference. William Wilton from Centennial Public Schools received a Service Award for his participation at the state and national level. William was also a state officer in FCCLA and very active in his school chapter. He will also been accepted into UNL’s College of Education Sciences Teachers Scholars Academy which provides full tuition for 4 years of coursework.
Josiah Gonzales from Scottsbluff High School also received $1,000 scholarship from UNL for his top gold medal in FCCLA for the Career Exploration STAR event focused on becoming a FCS teacher.
Funding for the dinner comes from retired FCS teachers around Nebraska who donate money to support the evening. The PowerPoint presentation is available for anyone wishing to use it as a recruiting tool as well. The number of students enrolling at all three post-secondary institutions has been growing, but the demand is remaining the same. Only a few programs have been terminated in the past five years, but quite a few also go unfilled and/or assigned to teachers without full certification in our subject area. We will continue to be diligent about recruiting new teachers and offering information to Nebraska FCS teachers anytime when they have a student interested in our profession.
The Nebraska Department of Education Human Resources and Sciences/Family and Consumer Sciences website has some information available for teaching FCS in Nebraska (https://www.education.ne.gov/hse/teach-facs-in-nebraska/ ). See more information at the “Say YES to FCS” website for free resources (https://www.aafcs.org/sayyes/home) and on the FCCLA website (http://fcclainc.org/say-yes-to-fcs.php).