Scotlyn Mummert is a student alum of Chestnut Ridge High School in Pennsylvania. She placed first in the American Enterprise Project at the 2018 National Leadership Conference in Baltimore, Maryland with Sarah Ryan and Megan Diehl. Scotlyn agreed to sit down with FBLA Social Media Ambassador David Ten to share her experience competing in American Enterprise Project.
Can you briefly describe what the FBLA American Enterprise Project is about and what you are expected to do in this event?
The American Enterprise Project is essentially a project that asks you to bring some of the ideals or the lessons of the American Enterprise System to your community of your school and with that we were expected to design a project and implement it in our school and the local community.
Why did you decide to compete in this particular event and did you have any partners?
Actually, we do our chapter events by dividing it among the officer team. But, the reason why we choose the American Enterprise Project was because, it feels like a while ago, I actually did this project two times before. We really had a lot of practice. Last year I did it with two of my friends, Megan and Ryan. We kept on doing because we liked it and we loved working as a team together.
What do you think you did differently the third time you competed in this event?
I think it’s dependent of the judges because you can be unbiased as you want but you will still like some projects more than others. I think with our last project we focused a lot on the students in our community and I think that resonated a lot with the judges.
How much of your success in this event do you attribute to your chapter’s involvement?
I think a lot of it because part of the American Enterprise Project score is based on your involvement and we really tried to get as tried to get as much chapter involvement as possible because the more activity you have the greater your score is in that category. I would actually say that it’s more than that because our chapter really helped with whatever we needed for the project. I feel like a lot of it is dependant. If I didn't have the chapter that I have I wouldn’t be able to perform as well.
Do you mind sharing what the major theme was in your project or your chapter involvement?
For this last project, actually for the past 3 years in the American Enterprise Project, I have really tried to extend each branch of the American Enterprise system to the High school level, the Middle school level, and the Elementary school level. Last year we did a lot with the kids in our after-school program, and we helped them a lot with preparing with life after high school.
What do you think most difficult part of the whole project, the pre-judged project or the presentation?
I don’t think either one of those was the most difficult because my FBLA adviser did a fabulous job, she made sure our reports were super tight, she made us experienced speakers. We would stay up till one or two, practicing our speeches, we were extremely dedicated and that all goes back to our advisor. I would honestly say that the hardest part for my partner and I were our really strong personalities. Trying to determine important things to put into the project and making sure that all our schedules lined up with each other was the hardest part I would say.
Overall, you were able to cooperate with your partners effectively?
Oh yeah, they were some of my best friends in high school so it came to us natureal. I would say we worked really well together. I would say it’s mostly from experience. I would always say that friends are fine to be partners with, but never your boyfriend or girlfriend, that would just be a mess. I am so grateful for the partners I had for this event, we just understood what had to get done.
What advice would give to people thinking of competing in this event?
I would say take pictures of everything, you never know when you would need something for your report, and for the written report I would say have as many people as you can read it. It’s 15 pages, so that’s a lot of work and it’s easy to miss something. I know me and my partners each read the report like three times, we had friends look over it, anyone who had a good set of eyes read out report. So exposure for your report is good and in terms of the speaking portion, I would say the one thing that set my team apart from the others is our ability to confidently answer questions. In practice I think it’s very good to have people from your chapter ask you questions to prepare you for the speaking part of the performance
Have you learned anything new from competing in this event?
I think it’s crazy, because before doing this project I didn’t even know what the American Enterprise System was, so it was really great to learn it myself and then bring it to people within my community.
Thank you Scotlyn!