The Incredible Journey of FLC



(From left to right) Michael Papa ’24, Christian Lee ’23, Messiah Perez ’23, Amir Naidoo ’23, and Nikhil Badlani ’23 pose for a photo.


On November 21, 2022, Edison High’s Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) joined schools across New Jersey at Pines Manor and participated in the 75th annual FCCLA Fall Leadership Connection. Accompanied by advisors Ms. Sandra Ledda and Ms. Danielle Heath, Edison returned with 28 honors, with Diti Bompally ‘24, Anshika Dubey ‘23, Aeliya Jafri ‘26, and Rida Jafri ‘23 earning first place in their respective events. 

Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) is a national, nonprofit Career and Technical Student Organization geared towards students in Family and Consumer Sciences education, present in public and private schools from Kindergarten through grade 12. Founded in 1945, “FCCLA members have been making a difference in their families, careers, and communities by addressing important personal, work, and societal issues through Family and Consumer Sciences education,” as per their website.

The theme for the 2022 Fall Leadership Connection was the “Incredible Journey of FCCLA.” Participants were encouraged to develop pieces centered around the myriad of opportunities FCCLA provides through career exploration and networking. 

Gold-winners Matthew Gaspar ‘23 and Christian Lee ‘23 used the theme to create the Go Green Planter. The planter, made from clay and a Pringles container to resemble a four-petaled flower, was designed to hold stationery and other lightweight supplies.

“The last 15 minutes of the conference were incredibly entertaining,” said Lee. “Watching all of our friends go up and win awards for their hard work was satisfying.” Unable to compete in FCCLA’s 2022 Spring Leadership Conference, Lee loved and treasured the environment, saying that it was a great first experience and encouraging others to participate. 

Alongside Lee and Gaspar, many novice competitors returned with honors. Sisters Rida Jafri ‘23 and Aeliya Jafri ‘26 secured first-place gold in the Interior Design event despite the unfamiliar environment. Using a combination of visuals and software for interior design, the sisters designed a model for a multipurpose basement with a $500 budget.

“Our inspiration was our own home situation. We recently moved into a house and never had the experience of decorating our basement,” said Rida. “Since we had our fair share of financial troubles, this was an opportunity to discover money-saving techniques that we can apply to our own basement. This project not only allowed us to use the knowledge we already had, but find other ways to get to cost-saving solutions.”

Students from Edison’s Tri-M Music Honor Society accompanied Edison FCCLA at Pines Manor, playing music in the lobby as a prelude to the event. Pieces included Mozart’s “Clarinet Concerto: II played by Vinay Menon ‘23, Bach’s Air on the G String played by Kevin Wu ‘23, Bach’s Gigue played by Pragya Singh ‘23, Gustav Holst’s Jupiter played by Rucha Joshi ‘23 & Jasmine Ramirez ‘23, and Prelude organized by Jordan Grigg and played by Vinay Menon ‘23, Dev Dalwadi ‘24, Ayrya Parisa ‘24, & Ashvik Rajeev ‘24.

The full list of Edison FCCLA Honors included:


  • Doha Afifi ‘24
  • Nikhil Badlani ‘23
  • Nikita Badlani ‘23
  • Diti Bompally ‘24 (First Place)
  • Anshika Dubey ‘23 (First Place)
  • Matthew Gaspar ‘23
  • Ashlynne Gordon ‘26
  • Aeliya Jafri ‘26 (First Place)
  • Rida Jafri ‘23 (First Place)
  • Christian Lee ‘23
  • Annalisa Marmol ‘26
  • Michael Papa ‘24
  • Genevieve Pidgeon ‘24
  • Stuti Shah ‘25


  • Tiara Abraham ‘23
  • Sarina Ahmed ‘23
  • Mohammad Haady ‘24
  • Karishma Kawle ‘25
  • Valerie Kersting ‘23
  • Amir Naidoo ‘23
  • Cecilia O’Connell ‘23
  • Jessica Pelaez ‘23
  • Messiah Perez ‘23
  • Zainab Sohail ‘23
  • Kinjal Vaibhav ‘25


  • Nirmit Bhoyar ‘25
  • Shrinidhi Ramachandran ’23