Junior Tori Chambers placed 3rd at the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) competition and will advance to the region competition in April. The organization is made for students who want to make a difference while also developing the skills needed to create solutions in working and domestic environments.
Tori participated in the Public Policy Advocate event this year and got her inspiration from an issue impacting her own family.
“In the Public Policy Advocate event, I advocated for the patent policy for pharmaceuticals,” Tori said. “I was interested because the price of pharmaceuticals is getting to the point where wealth is defined by how much health care a person can afford. My grandma has a hard time affording medicine to treat her arthritis, which also got me interested in public policy advocating.”
Though Tori enjoyed the process, there were difficulties she faced while working through the steps to create her final product.
“The most challenging part of the project was finding reliable sources because so many of them were biased and political,” Tori said. “Finding objective sources that supported what I was advocating for was difficult and proved how weighed down the area is without being concerned with the people who need special care.”
After participating in FCCLA competitions over the past three years, FCCLA sponsor Rhonda Cupit has been able to watch Tori grow and believes her work ethic has been a major factor in her success.
“Every year Tori does something different, last year she had to do a YouTube video because it was virtual,” Cupit said. “I’ve seen her continue to develop within all fields of the events offered by FCCLA and am excited to see how she does at state after placing 3rd at the regional event.”
Tori is excited about going to the state convention and being a part of the workshops alongside the competition.
“Going to state makes me feel proud because I’m able to represent my school,” Tori said. “Also, knowing that it wasn’t just a fun project and that I actually did well among my competitors makes me feel proud of the project I produced.”
While FCCLA gives opportunities in a school setting, it also helps promote skills that can be used in a professional work environment.
“I hope that students gain leadership skills from participating in FCCLA,” Cupit said. “I hope students gain a better understanding of a professional work environment and develop an exceptional work ethic.”
Tori believes that FCCLA has truly taught her skills that have become extremely valuable in school and in a professional setting.
“FCCLA has taught me time management and the ability to gain knowledge through research and how to apply it to a specific category when necessary,” Tori said. “It also helps educate me on the topic I’m interested in most at the time.”