Mount Pulaski High School students bring home national gold medal in leadership from D.C. conference

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[August 18, 2015]  MOUNT PULASKI - For the fourth year in a row students representing the Mount Pulaski High School chapter of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America attended the FCCLA National Leadership Conference and showcased their talents.

This year the national competition was held in Washington, D.C. on July 3rd - 10th and gave the students not only the opportunity to rate their skills against others from around the United States, but also the chance to explore the Nation's Capital and all its history. Nearly 8,000 students and advisers converged on the Walter E. Washington Convention Center to celebrate the theme of this year's conference "Together We Are Healthy."

For the first time in Mount Pulaski High School history the Parliamentary Procedure team received a national gold medal rating. According to adviser Wyatt Waterkotte, "In this event, students must learn the various rules of parliamentary law that are used to run official business proceedings. In the competition, the students must hold a mock business meeting in which they demonstrate a dozen business motions using proper parliamentary procedures. They must also take a parliamentary knowledge test." This year's members of the gold medal team were Clayton Lindley, Garrett Johnston, TJ Benhart, Brady Walsh, Brady Coppinger, Sam Koehl and Eli Olson.

Hannah Riedle also attended the conference and received a national silver medal rating for her outstanding efforts in the Job Interview. Waterkotte noted that Job Interview is an event in which a student must identify a job they are interested in once they are an adult. "The member must then research the job, necessary qualifications, and the job description. Following that, the member must put together a detailed portfolio including a job application, resume, recommendations, and examples of their work which would qualify them for the job. At the competition, the student presents the portfolio and is interviewed by a panel of judges."

In addition to the competitive events, students participated in a variety of activities related to Family and Consumer Sciences, including helping and spectating at the Knowledge Bowl competition, attending workshops and participating in general sessions.

The group also found time to take in the local cuisine, all under the guidance of Waterkotte and chaperone Melanie Hinson, the school's guidance counselor.

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Finally the group spent quality time sightseeing at the National Mall, where they walked through the monuments and memorials, the National Portrait Gallery, Ford's Theatre, Petersen House, Chinatown, the U.S. Mint and the U.S. Capitol.

Representative John Shimkus also met with the group and gave them a tour of his office as well as having one of his interns give a tour of the Capitol buildings.

On a final note, Waterkotte added, "After a full week of competition and activities, as well as a lot of time spent on the road, we were all happy to return home. As always these FCCLA members proved themselves to be some of the best (students) that the Mount Pulaski area has to offer. The community should be extremely proud of their accomplishments. If you see them, please extend your congratulations on a job well done in competition as well as their representation of our community." 

[Teena Lowery]


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