NJ FCCLA Leadership Bootcamp

Guide to Being Awesome


Adedoyin Ayeni '23

Student leaders were asked to find items around their desks that would help them survive in a given situation.



On Saturday, January 8, 2022, New Jersey FCCLA, held its 13th Annual Leadership Bootcamp for both student members and their advisers. Usually held in person, members from across New Jersey gathered on Zoom to develop their leadership skills with the help of the words of Robby Novak’s ‘Kid President’s Guide to Being Awesome”.

Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America, also known as FCCLA, is a student-run national, non-profit organization for young men and women from grades 6 to grade 12 that helps create leaders and address important personal, family, and work issues through Family and Consumer Sciences education.  Leadership Bootcamp is New Jersey FCCLA’s way to expose its members to a conference dedicated to leadership concepts.  This amazing experience joined students together to network, discuss issues, set goals, and soak up the meaning of leadership in action. 

Led by Catherine DiGioia-Weinfeld and Bill Plastine, the theme of the conference was the Guide to Being Awesome. The day was jam-packed with leadership development training to help students strengthen their leadership skills.  Students were taught about communication, active listening, and empathetic listening.  Members were then given the opportunity to put these skills into practice.  

Students were not the only attendees given this opportunity. There was an adviser session focusing on becoming more effective adults and communicators. The teachers focused on the concepts related to Becoming Better Grownups by Brad Montague.  At the end of the sessions, a reflection and a closing session highlighted the most important takeaways of the day. At this session, the State Executive Council gave multiple updates and members were then given one final lesson to close the conference. Members were able to continue their learning through a week-long Goosechase activity, where they completed challenges and followed their progress through a leaderboard. Recognition for top winners was announced at Thursday’s award session. 

All in all, the students that attended Leadership Bootcamp received engaging leadership experiences which will guide them on the road to becoming an effective leader!