Student efforts lead Gov. Inslee to declare Family and Consumer Science Day in state

Students in Washington state wanted the importance of their major acknowledged and Gov. Inslee helped make that happen.

Two students and Central Washington University partnered with two students at Washington State University to write a proclamation for their family and consumer science programs.

Gov. Inslee received the proclamation and declared Dec. 3, 2019 Family and Consumer Science Day in the state of Washington.

Central Washington University students, Jessica Elshire and Madeline Maden, told KAPP-KVEW that their program has developed and changed through the years.

“Everyone should really be taking the classes,” Jessica said, “and we wanted to bring how important it was to everyone in the state.”

Family and consumer sciences used to be more commonly known as “home economics” but on an academic level, that is changing.

“Back in the day it was cooking and sewing and classes to be a wife and be able to take care of a home,” Madeline said, “and in our society now it is about teaching life skills.”

Students within the program now have more access to teaching other classes. Madeline says it is important to get the recognition as more than just home economics because it is so much more than that today.

“I hope that future family and consumer science educators that they keep pushing to get more things recognized,” Madeline said.

Jessica and Madeline are both seniors, they have seen the program at Central Washington University grow since being there.

“We used to have maybe 8 students in our entire program,” Jessica said, “and now we have around 45.”

Madeline said it is nice to be recognized by friends and family because it has always been important to her.

The students observe Dining Day, a holiday that encourages families to come together and make nutritious meals, is also on Dec. 3.

“I’ve pursued this education and to have recognition from the governor, I am kind of speechless about it,” Jessica said, “Even this one day we got recognized for it is absolutely amazing.”

Jessica and Madeline hope other students in Washington state continue to seek acknowledgement for family and consumer sciences. They look to the possibilities they have in the future as educators and the impact they could have in their communities and school districts.

“It was honestly really easy,” Jessica said when talking about writing the proclamation.

They are happy to have this step toward better understanding of their program and even banter about how they could make it a national holiday now that they have conquered the state level.

“You never know,” Jessica said.

“Yes, you never know.” Madeline agreed.

Jessica and Madeline are currently finishing fall finals and will move on to student teaching and teaching certifications within the next year.