Old Bridge High School
Running for Membership VP
Officer Candidate Test Score : 45/50
What do you believe is the biggest area of improvement NJ FBLA-PBL currently faces? How would you work to address this area?
In my opinion, the biggest area NJ FBLA could improve upon is increasing membership numbers. This can be accomplished by creating new initiatives to focus on mid-year member retention and expanding on existing resources that chapters have for member recruitment and retention. Initiatives that focus on keeping members who are not attending SLC are very important, because during that time of year is usually when members start to lose interest. I would like to implement an initiative called "Spotlight Saturdays" to feature on the NJ FBLA Instagram. This would be a weekly competition to showcase members who use their business skills outside of FBLA. Also, during this time of the year, I would like to hold a mid-year state officer forum, for officers to connect to members, inform them of progress, and answer questions. In addition, resources will be expanded upon for chapters to increase membership. I believe a key aspect that chapters should focus on is 8th and 9th grade recruitment. Rising high schoolers and those in their first year of high school are looking to try new activities and join new clubs. If we focus on promoting FBLA to them, we will be able to make up for members lost in the graduating class and build a stronger membership foundation as they move through high school. To go a step further, I believe we should encourage active chapters to start Middle Level chapters in their districts, to gain more members from earlier on.
What will you do to increase the number of active chapters?
To increase the number of active chapters, I believe there are three groups that need to be focused on. Firstly, I will work to make sure that current active chapters remain solvent. This includes promoting current initiatives, but also creating new ones to help chapters to grow. Secondly, I will focus on getting inactive chapters to become involved again. Inactive chapters will be contacted with information from state officers including what they missed while they were inactive, current and new initiatives, and resources to guide them. They should be reminded of how FBLA benefits their school and how they can get restarted. Lastly, I will work to help start new chapters in interested schools. I will reach out to schools without chapters, to show them how FBLA can benefit their school. Active chapters need a strong active membership to function, therefore membership recruitment and retention techniques are crucial.
What leadership roles do you have inside and outside of FBLA-PBL and how have they shaped you?
Inside of FBLA, I have served as my local chapter's Freshman Liaison, and I am currently serving as the Membership Vice President. I am also on the NJ FBLA social media committee and work as the co-chair of my local chapter's competitive events committee. Outside of FBLA, I am currently the President of the Asia Pacific Club and the Key Club. Other previous leadership roles include, Chair of the Teen Advisory Board at my public library and a leader in my school's PEER leadership program. As a result of my time in these leadership roles, I am able to work and communicate effectively with others, as well as being able to motivate others to do their best. Due to my experience, I am also capable of coordinating endeavors and managing group projects. My experience within my local FBLA chapter has given me many opportunities to interact with members and listen to their comments and concerns. As a part of the Asia Pacific and Key Clubs, I have gained experience working on community service projects. Overall, my biggest takeaway from my leadership experience is learning how to maintain good relationships within the school community, with advisors, teachers, administrators, and the student body. I believe that I will be able to use my previous leadership roles to effectively serve as your Membership Vice President, as I will be able to fluidly communicate and work with chapters and members.
How will you ensure chapters are encouraging and completing community service?
Aside from continuing to promote the Community Service Challenge, I believe that the state officer team should give chapters soft guidelines to set expectations for them. This can include ways to start a March of Dimes project, for chapters who can unsure of how to proceed. It is imperative for members to understand the importance of business-community relationships, so chapters should be encouraged to hold at least one chapter-wide community service project throughout the year. Chapters should also continue to push the CSA awards program, to encourage their members to contribute to community service on their own.
What current state initiatives would you like to continue and/or what new state initiatives would you like to begin?
State initiatives that I would like to continue are "Tip Thursdays" on Instagram and Adopt-a-Chapter. I believe that members greatly benefit from "Tip Thursdays" as it allows them to gain advice from real world professionals. The Adopt-a-Chapter program is also a great way for chapters to connect and help each other. I would also like to continue the community service initiatives, Pin-Ups for Preemies and Teddies for Hope, as ways for chapters to continue their community service.
There are two new state initiatives that I would like to begin. Firstly, I would like to start a social media initiative called "Spotlight Saturdays" to feature on the NJ FBLA Instagram. This would be a competition for members to use their acquired business skills outside of the FBLA setting. Members would submit projects that incorporate business skills or relate to FBLA goals. This would motivate creativity, innovation and competition among members, and encourage them to better themselves. In addition, I would like to start a chapter partnership program, to encourage interregional collaboration. Interested chapters would get paired with another chapter in their area to work on a community service project. Their participating members would then collaborate virtually or in-person. Members would be able to build their relationship and communication skills and expand their networks. This would help foster a sense of FBLA community and state chapter pride.