On February 15, Teacher Cadets left after the school day had ended and made their way to Raleigh. This was no ordinary field trip.
“The FTA/Teacher Cadet State Conference is an annual event that allows students from across the state to network, meet with college partners, and participate in contests (scrapbook, Legislative lobbying, etc.). They also attend breakout sessions on topics relevant to college and careers in education,” Stephanie Wallace, the English teacher in charge of this branch of the organization at East Forsyth, said.
Carley Rumfelt (‘17) has been in Teacher Cadets for two years now, and loves the trips that they take, like the one they took to Raleigh.
“I thought the trip had a perfect balance of fun stuff. I liked talking to the Legislatures because I felt like I was making a difference and doing something important,” Rumfelt stated.
“The experience was amazing! We got to visit the Legislature to lobby for more funding for Teacher Cadets as well as reinstating the Teacher Fellows scholarship,” Jessica Eason (‘17) said. “We listened to speakers that gave us great advice for our futures as teachers, and we attended workshops that taught us skills for managing classrooms, social media, and leadership.”
Like Eason and Rumfelt, Mrs. Wallace’s favorite part of the trip was lobbying. “I have pictures of my students dressed in their best business attire. We marched the nine blocks to the Legislature and went from office to office lobbying for the return of funding for the Teacher Cadet class and the North Carolina Teaching Fellows Scholarship. The students were professional, engaging, informed, and fearless!”
“Going out of my comfort zone to speak to politicians as an advocate for the program, was one of the most memorable parts. It provided me with a newfound confidence and reminded me that the people really do have a say in things that they feel strongly about,” Eason said.
“We made contacts and follow-up appointments with several legislators. We had 2 of our members elected to state office, Ben Casinger to President and Jenny Taylor to Secretary. In addition we won 1st place in the video competition,” Mrs. Wallace said.
So according to the students and the teacher, the trip was a success!
Hopefully it’s as successful next year!