Eight Oklahoma high school students learned about the field of family and consumer sciences (FCS) during a week-long academy hosted recently by the College of Human Sciences at Oklahoma State University. The inaugural Family and Consumer Sciences Education Academy also have students a look at related career opportunities available through the Cooperative Extension Service and in public schools.
Family and Consumer Sciences Education coordinator Dr. Paula Tripp said the academy grew out of a shortage of FCS educators. “There is a critical shortage of FCS education professionals,” Tripp said. “We designed the Academy to expose high school students to the career opportunities an FCS degree can provide.”
In addition to presentations from FCS educators and lessons on how to be an FCS teacher, the students toured the OSU campus, including Boone Pickens Stadium, and visited a county Cooperation Extension office and high school FCS classrooms.
Students who attended the first academy included Sarah Brown, Hartshorne High School; Katie Sims, Hartshorne High School; Raigen Leal, Byng High School; Brynn Danker, Wellston High School; Tiffany Snyder, Meeker High School; Shayonna Jennings, Kiamichi Career Tech; Erin Reed, Kiamichi Career Tech; Ashley Shaw, Barnsdall High School; and Karin Davis, Tulsa Technology Center.
Students were nominated by their high school FCS teacher or county extension educator, based on their interest in the field. Tripp said all of the students were excited by the week’s activities to the point that they are all planning to apply to OSU and enroll in the College of Human Sciences.
LaDell Emmons, Pittsburg County FCS educator and president of the Oklahoma Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Association, and Karin Davis, Tulsa Technology Center apparel design instructor, led sessions and provided leadership in the OSU residence hall where the students stayed.
Dr. Shiretta Ownbey, associate dean for academic services, said the academy is an excellent tool for recruiting students to the college and an FCS career path.
“We are very pleased with our first academy,” Ownbey said. “The students were receptive to the information on FCS and the opportunities in Human Sciences. They all seemed to be ready to be OSU students in the fall of 2015.”
“We anticipate the interest will grow and next year’s academy will have more students,” Ownbey said.
For more information on the FCS degree option in the College of Human Sciences at OSU, go to http://humansciences.okstate.edu/documents/factsheet/FCSED.pdf.