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Family and consumer sciences education sophomore Leslie Rodriguez was recently awarded the National Bettye Brown Scholarship, given by the National Association Teachers of Family and Consumer Sciences

Family and consumer sciences education sophomore awarded national scholarship

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Media Contact: Katie Lacey | Communications Specialist | 405-744-9347 | katie.l.lacey@okstate.edu

Family and consumer sciences education sophomore Leslie Rodriguez was recently awarded the National Bettye Brown Scholarship, given by the National Association Teachers of Family and Consumer Sciences. This scholarship honors students driven to make an impact in family science education.

To Rodriguez, pursuing a career in family and consumer science education is all about empowering students to achieve success in and outside of the classroom while instilling confidence, purpose and compassion.

Why did you choose to study at Oklahoma State University?

I chose to study at OSU mainly because of the Department of Human Development and Family Science. My mentor graduated from this program and encouraged me to apply. She was there every step of the way and continues to be a huge help as I navigate my college career.

Are you involved in any student organizations on campus?

I am involved in a few student organizations on campus. Most of my time goes to the Family and Consumer Sciences Education Club where members collaborate with others that are going into the same field. I currently serve as president and I have been active since my freshman year. We have been able to hear from amazing teachers around the state.

I am also a scholar in the Inclusion Leadership Program. This program allows second year college students to learn about being leaders in a diverse, inclusive society. We also get to form a mentorship with students in surrounding high schools.

How did you find your passion in family and consumer sciences education?

The time I spent in high school helped me discover a career in Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS). I was heavily involved in Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA), a student-led organization where I could be a leader and put my skills to use. At the time, I was just having fun in an organization with my friends, but I was also working on my personal development. I strongly believe one person’s enthusiastic attitude can inspire others. I was grateful to have four amazing FCS teachers that did just that. Going forward, I want to help students learn important skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to go out into the real world and inspire others. FCS connects people in the classroom and those experiences have long-term impacts on students’ lives just as it did in my life. 

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to move back to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and get a job as a family and consumer science teacher in a public school. What I find very exciting about this field is that it is an everchanging world. Especially with the recent pandemic, people are angsty to return to normal. My hope is to go in with an enthusiasm that makes people want to get more involved and help our community grow.

The tagline for the College of Education and Human Sciences is: People. Passion. Purpose. What does this mean to you? How does it relate to your studies?

This tagline highlights the things I value in my life and what I choose to hold onto as I go through life’s hardships. Now more than ever, I think it is easy to lose track of what you are working towards. I have made so many great connections with professors, current FCS educators and student teachers. I have been able to surround myself with people that build me up and encourage me to grow and persevere. A career in FCS will allow me to help others by teaching courses that made me successful in many aspects of my life, and that’s where my passion comes from.

What advice would you give to incoming freshman?

The best advice that I got when I started college was to get out of my comfort zone and to stay out. It’s so easy to put in the hard work to get connected at the beginning of the year, then cruise through the rest of the school year. There is so much to do and learn.

Story By: Sierra Walter | sierra.walter@okstate.edu

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