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Family Studies students earn national recognition


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Sacramento State’s Family Studies students dominated the first Family Life Education Month contest sponsored by the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR), winning three of the five categories. Two students were double-winners.

Family Life Ed Contest

Michelle Smith produced the top Family Life Education (FLE) fact sheet. Leslie Rubalcava submitted the winning activity list, an illustrated calendar filled with ideas for family projects and adventures.

And in the combined tagline-logo category, Smith and Rubalcava teamed up with fellow students Adrian Jackson and Kyla Ramirez to coin the tagline, “Learn Today, Teach Tomorrow & Grow Forever.” Nina Bateyko, Kendall Beermann, Kathy Sengvanhpheng and Justine Wilcoxson created the winning logo, an illustration of silhouettes depicting childhood to old age and labeled “Educating Families Throughout the Lifespan.”

The Minneapolis-based NCFR launched the nationwide competition, which attracted more than 60 entries, to generate promotional materials for Family Life Education Month in February.

Professor Ann Moylan turned the contest into a research assignment for students in her Family Life Education course, within the Family and Consumer Sciences Department.

“I wanted them to be more aware of the National Council on Family Relations, the professional organization that approves our program on campus,” she says, “because they can get a provisional certification from the Council (when they graduate) and two years later, with two years’ work experience, they become full-fledged Certified Family Life Educators (CFLE).

She also saw it as an opportunity for her students to earn some recognition.

“There are a lot of opportunities in art and music, for instance, where there are competitions and juried shows,” says Moylan, longtime director of the University’s Center for Family Studies. “In our field, being awarded for something is kind of rare.”

Individual winners Smith and Rubalcava each will receive a one-year NCFR membership, valued at $85. The group winners will be entered into a drawing for two memberships, and Moylan was awarded a one-year membership as the faculty sponsor.

Family Life Educators work in schools and other community settings, such as adoption and foster agencies and family resource centers.

For media assistance, contact Sacramento State’s Office of Public Affairs at (916) 278-6156.

– Dixie Reid