Lindsey Metz inspires her students through education and community service
For the past thirteen years of her teaching career, 2007 Family and Consumer Sciences Education alumna Lindsey Metz has shared her passion for family and consumer sciences with her students both in and out of the classroom.
In her current role as an education and training instructor and Family Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) advisor at Hollenstein Career and Technology Center at Eagle Mountain Saginaw ISD, Lindsey teaches upper-level education and training pathway courses.
In these courses, high school students are allowed to demonstrate their understanding of child development, along with teaching practices at the local elementary and middle schools. Lindsey also furthers their knowledge and skills in the classroom by teaching effective classroom management strategies, engaging lesson planning, and many other professional skills to help them be successful in their field site assignments.
"I help students to build portfolios displaying their professional growth as they move through the program," Lindsey said. "I love working in my current role because I believe that there is no greater opportunity to positively influence the lives of others than to help inspire and support future educators, who will in turn make a difference in the lives of their students someday."
As an FCCLA advisor, Lindsey prepares her students for Competitive Star Events related to education and training, where they research and job shadow others in their prospective careers and plan and teach lessons in our schools and at competitions. In the past six years, Lindsey has taken 37 students to compete at the Texas FCCLA State Meeting, with seven students advancing to the National Leadership Conference, and with three placing first or second in the nation in their events. While the student success at competitions is exciting, Lyndsey says the growth she sees in her students is the most rewarding.
"I have seen a student go from rarely speaking in class their first year to presiding as President over our district banquet, speaking in front of over 100 people with poise and confidence," Lindsey said. "Being an FCCLA advisor is rewarding because the lessons students learn in leadership, teamwork, and communication help them grow as people; many students have reached out after graduation and shared how valuable these skills were in preparing them for their future."
FCCLA isn't just about competitions. Lindsey said that in the past six years as an advisor, she has also helped her students plan and implement many projects within their community. One of the most impactful being their continued partnering with the local Life Skills program, planning events for students with special needs.
"Our FCCLA members wanted all students at their high school to feel a part of community events, so each year they collect donations and create homecoming mums, plan a Christmas Cookie Decorating party, make and deliver Valentine's, and volunteer at our district's spring district-wide Life Skills dance," Lindsey explained.
Their volunteer efforts have also included pairing with local schools to create presentations to promote a greater understanding of dyslexia, the dangers of eating disorders, and the dangers of human trafficking. They have also spent time gathering donations for their local food banks and animal shelter and serving meals at their Ronald McDonald House.
Lindsey also had to face an abrupt change during the 2020 school year due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While the changes forced her and fellow educators to reinvent how they conduct their jobs overnight, she said her time as a Family and Consumer Sciences Education student prepared her for the unexpected.
"I think my degree and the program prepared me for this by reinforcing that teachers are lifelong learners," Lindsey explained. "I remember my FCSE professors at Tech talking about how things continually change and as FCS teachers, we need to be prepared to continue to grow and adapt throughout our careers."
The reinforcement of being a lifelong learner was also reflected in the many courses Lindsey took as an FCSE student which, she says, prepares all who go through the program to teach a variety of subjects.
"I would not have been as well prepared to do this without my experiences at Tech," Lindsey said. "Working in the Skyviews Restaurant as a part of the Restaurant, Hotel, and Institutional Management coursework gave me insight into both the front and back of the house, which I use and shared with my students when I taught Principles of Hospitality and Introduction to Culinary Arts. Working in the Child Development Research Center gave me experiences that I share when teaching Early Childhood, Parenting, and Human Development and Family Studies."
Lindsey said that Texas Tech's Family and Consumer Sciences Education program stands out among others in that it gave her the ability to take courses with professors and students who were majoring in various fields.
Having this opportunity helped give her a higher degree of knowledge into many different areas of study, including those she was interested in when she first came to Texas Tech as a freshman, such as Personal Financial Planning, Apparel Design and Manufacturing, and Interior Design.
Her experiences at Texas Tech have inspired her to recommend the program to her students, noting that Family Consumer Sciences educators have the ability to make an impact on students, teaching them many skills they'll continue to use in their futures.
"When we look around at the world today, Family Consumer Sciences educators work to address so many of the challenges that our society is facing," Lindsey said. "It is my hope that in sharing these vital life skills with students they are able to have success and achieve their goals both personally and professionally."