National FCCLA Conference

Valerie Herbert

         Anaheim, California. It’s the home of Disneyland, a popular location for film sets, and also where the 2019 National FCCLA convention was held. Gabbi Krutsinger and Alexis Richmond, two Chase County FCCLA members, had the opportunity to compete at the 2019 National FCCLA conference. 

         Gabbi Krutsinger has always had a fondness for making fleece tie blankets. This fondness for making blankets sparked her interest in starting her own blanket making business. She took the opportunity to use her blanket business for her STAR project through her FCCLA chapter. STAR Projects, or Students Taking Action with Recognition, focuses on the achievements within a chapter and individual projects, leadership skills, and career preparation. (National FCCLA Website) There are different competition categories under each of these criteria. 

         Gabbi used her blanket making business, Gabbi’s Fleeces, for the entrepreneurship senior category, where she would either create a business or a product. She worked throughout the year and first competed at districts, then competed at state and qualified to attend the 2019 FCCLA national convention. 

         The preparation to achieve this level of success was not an easy task. “It’s like any other huge project that you do,” Gabbi said as she recalled the process of her preparation. “Mine, I spent a lot of time, especially since I did the business part of it.”

         Gabbi not only had to create a business plan for her project, but she also had to undergo the process of selling her blankets, which took an extra amount of time.

         Gabbi felt she “did pretty well” at the national level. Each person who presented in her same category had a different judge. This meant that scores could vary.

         “You’re only competing against yourself at nationals, and so I think I did great in it,” she said. 

          Alexis Richmond also spent many hours creating, planning and perfecting her STAR project. Alexis also started working on her project on Nov. 2018. She completed her project in January that year and worked to perfect and polish her project for the state convention that was held in April. She presented her project in the leadership category at the national convention.

          “I had to create a leadership plan for myself with goals and objectives on how to improve my personal leadership qualities,” she said. 

           Alexis went home with a gold medal and fifth place overall in her category.

           “I am happy about that placing,” she said, “I want to work to get better each year that I get the opportunity to compete at Nationals.”

           With the opportunity to compete at the national level, both members expressed what their favorite moments about the experience were. Gabbi was very excited to see the number of delegates that had attended the National Conference.  “Just to see that many people involved in FCCLA was super fun to see.”

           Alexis was had been elected to be a part of a state peer officer team back at the 2018 state convention. At the national convention, she and her state peer officer team created a booth display. She enjoyed spending time with her teammates while also promoting peer education to various members of the FCCLA organization. 

          Gabbi Krutsinger and Alexis Richmond are two FCCLA members that have spent many hours developing their projects. All that hard work and dedication paid off when they were given the opportunity to compete at the national level.


Gabbi Krutsinger and Alexis Richmond show off their medals as they attend the 2019 National FCCLA convention.