My State Officer Term began in April of 2013. I was elected as the Vice President of
Communications and some of my major responsibilities were taking meeting minutes
and writing post for the FBLA Arizona blog. It has been an incredible year; I have been able to travel all over Arizona and even to Washington, D.C., I have met so many new and amazing members, and I have even gained new friends and relationships through it all. From this amazing experience I have strengthened my skills in leadership, public speaking, teamwork, time management, and much more.
Throughout the year, I worked on many projects for FBLA. One of my favorite projects, that every State Officer was a part of, was the Building Better Member pins. The Building Better Member pins or BBM pins, is a member recognition program for deserving members. At every conference, every State Officer is supposed to be paying attention and noticing if a member does something outstanding. Before the end of whatever conference it is, we give that particular member their pin and let them know why they are receiving this recognition. I really loved being able to give out the BBM pins. This recognition is different than other recognition programs. It’s based solely on what the State Officers see and it’s a more intimate award. Members do good things all the time and don’t get much recognition, with BBM pins they get recognized for doing the little things. Some of the reasons I gave out the BBM pins to members were good leadership, helped another State Officer clean up, and was an active participant in a workshop. Overall, this was an amazing project for the members and I only hope that it will continue on with the next team of State Officers.
I loved being able to be a part of the 2014 Middle Level Conference. It was my second time attending the conference and I can say it was more fun this year. This conference is slightly different compared to the others that FBLA Arizona puts on. It is held at Centennial High School, so most of the planning and organization is done by the Centennial FBLA Chapter. I love this because the whole chapter becomes involved with the judging, the scheduling of the day, and overall just being great resources for the younger members of FBLA. At this conference I was able to do a lot of different tasks. I was in the Opening Session and was able to welcome all the members to the 2014 Middle Level Conference. Then, I had the opportunity to be a judge for the Pledge and Mission competition. From the perspective of someone who was not a part of Middle Level, I can say that I wish I could have been a part of it. The students who competed in this event were unbelievably good for being in middle school. It was an individual performance event, so they had to get in front of me and another judge and recite the FBLA pledge and mission. Many of them were very confident and were able to look us in the eyes and speak very clearly. I can definitely say that at that age I was not prepared to go in front of a group of judges and speak to them, even if it was just to recite a paragraph. This just goes to show that at any age level, FBLA can help members in anything as long as they take the opportunity.
Earlier in the day, I also helped give a resume workshop with Alexis and Ian. It was great to see so many members come in and want to learn about how to build a resume. It went really well because Ian, Alexis, and I all work very well together and I believe that the members got the most out of the presentation. At the Closing Session I was given one last task: to announce the winners! I was really nervous for this because pronouncing names is difficult for everyone. In the end, Brandon and I were able to successfully announce all of the winners at the 2014 Middle Level Conference. Overall, it was a great conference to be a part of. As State Officers, we were able to get a little more one on one time than usual with the Middle Level members as well as help guide them to the transitioning of Middle Level to FBLA.
Another project that I was actively involved with was the daily social media posts to Facebook and Twitter. Every officer was given a day of the week that had a certain theme and they were in charge of coming up with posts for FBLA Arizona’s social media. All of the daily themes related to helping members and advisors better their local chapter. I was given Monday and Monday’s were More Members Monday! Basically, I had to create multiple posts that had multiple tips on how to increase membership and retain members. I loved having Monday’s because I felt that most of the tips I submitted could actually help chapters if they took the chance to do them. A lot of the ideas were from my chapter, so they were all tips that could potentially work. A few examples include: Utilize any social media; create a chapter Facebook or twitter so that all students can keep up to date with the latest chapter news, have your local chapter officers come and present what FBLA is to all of the available business classes, and build a student email list. By getting every members email you can send out updated news; a great way for last minute information. Our first weekly posts started in August and we were all able to continue with the project up until the end of the March. In the end, this was a very successful project. Plus, it is always good to keep FBLA in member’s minds; so when they look at their Facebook feed or Twitter feed they see a post from FBLA Arizona!
Chapter visits are, hands down, one of the best experiences you get from being a State Officer. As a team of eight we were partnered up with our chapter visit partner; my partner was Jaime Mares. From about August to late October, we were swamped with requests from chapters to do a chapter visit. The reason being, they want their students and current members to learn about FBLA early on in the school year so that they are more willing to participate in events throughout the rest of the year. Over the course of those three months I visited 7 schools with Jaime: Youngker High School, Coolidge High School, Estrella Foothills High School, Buckeye Union High School, Lake Havasu High School, Mesa Mountain View High School, and Maryvale High School. From those 7 schools we gave over 15 presentations to their business classes. Every experience was one of a kind. Sometimes they were an overnight trip and others weren’t. Sometimes Sam Bhat took us or we went on our own. And some presentations were easier than others. No matter what though, I could always expect a different adventure. Another major aspect of the chapter visits was that I was able to spend more time with Jaime. I didn’t really know him well before, all I knew was that he was from the same school district. And at conferences he was busier than others due to the fact that he was the President. Through all of these chapter visits, I was able to get to know him very well and we also learned how to work successfully as a team. When I leave, I know that I will miss chapter visits because of the chances I got to travel, meet new members, and spend time with members of the officer team.