Yesterday was Pennsylvania’s annual FBLA conference. The three training sessions were great! The young people who attended were very engaged and challenged me on some very good points. The subject was leadership but covered three areas that I feel from my education and experience are important to developing yourself and others. Those three things are Tenacity, Competence and Communication. I had some very special moments mixed in among an otherwise outstanding morning.
My favorite moment was when a very sharp young lady came up to me after the third session. In my bio, they had included my role as a Naval officer. She walked up to me and said, Mr. Mac, I wanted to thank you for your service. Then she hit me with the second shot: she had already been notified that she was accepted to the Naval Academy later this year and she was excited about continuing the legacy.
I looked at this young woman and saw my country’s future. She already carries herself well and has the “right stuff” so I know she will do well. All of the young people we worked with yesterday had poise and were respectful. Then she hit me with the best part. “Mr. Mac, I have already decided that since I like science and math, I want to be on submarines.” I am proud that we have Americans that still see the value of serving this great land.
Seeing so many young people wearing respectable suits and competing in programs like business plans, finances, public speaking, responsibility and so on reminded me that this is still a great country. I know its not perfect and I know there are probably as many kids who would just as soon play Angry Birds than put themselves out there. But for two days in Central Pennsylvania, I got a personal reminder that we still have a fighting chance.
God Bless those kids and God Bless America