NFCR National Conference
“You may come from somewhere, but you can go anywhere.” These are the words I heard while attending National Council on Family Relations (NFCR) Conference, a national conference in Baltimore Nov. 25-30, with other colleagues of mine. After hearing these words I felt like they were fitting to my own life.
I grew up in a small town on a dairy farm and was the first child to leave home and attend a university. Today, I am a junior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point preparing to graduate next December in just 3.5 years, but when I started college I didn’t know exactly what was ahead of me. I came into college as a social work major, then switched my major to business administration, and then for the third time changed to a family and consumer sciences-family life education major with a minor in business administration. I slowly started to meet people in my major, knew their names, but never really had much conversation with them. Last spring I decided to join my student organization, University Council on Family Relations (UCFR). I started participating in events and got to know more people.
At the beginning of this year a friend of mine invited me to be a part of a group of students who were working on a National Service Project to present at this national conference in Baltimore. I was ecstatic to have been asked to be a part of this group; this was the turning point for me. I finally felt like I belonged, I was no longer that random girl sitting alone, barely talking at a meeting. I had friends and I was now going places with this organization.
While at the conference we presented our service project titled Living Positive Kenya, together with other student affiliates we are raising money to help those living in the slums of Kenya. While at the conference I attended numerous different sessions. The sessions varied from people talking about their research, round table discussions with professionals in this field, speed mentoring, and speakers telling their story.
My favorite sessions included ones where I had the chance to talk one-on-one with professionals and hear about what they do each day and how they got there. Every person had different advice to give me and a different story to share with me about their own personal experiences. After attending numerous sessions in three days I learned so much about my field of study and created an even deeper passion for what I want to do some day. Thinking back I never would have thought I would have had the opportunity to travel out of state with a student organization while in college, but I did and it was one of my best college experiences thus far. It goes to show that I may have come from somewhere, but I can go anywhere.
Kelsey Haelfrisch is junior majoring in family and consumer sciences – family life education at UW-Stevens Point.