The first floor of the D hall at Highland was where Mikaila McIntyre started on her path towards her future of becoming a Sterling Scholar in Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS).
In that same corner of the school, children as young as infants ranging to 5 years old are also starting their educational journeys. Highland’s preschool and daycare became the perfect training ground for McIntyre as she fell in love with the subjects of FCS.
“I’ve always loved kids,” McIntyre said. “During my freshman year I took child development, I did cooking, and I took fashion design, all in the same year. Then I continued my child development up until last year.”
The American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences describes FCS as the “Field of study focused on the science and the art of living and working well in our complex world”. It’s a definition that shows how the subject can be applied to different aspects of students’ lives in different ways. Mikaila found where she wanted to apply it.
“For me, Family and Consumer Sciences is kind of what everyone goes through and does,” McIntyre said. “It’s kind of all around us, because we deal with our families, we’re dealing with it 24/7. It’s family mostly for me, that’s why I did Sterling Scholar for Family and Consumer Science.”
Throughout her four years at Highland, Mikaila spent a lot of time working with the kids in the daycare and says that it is one of her favorite parts about FCS.
“I really loved working with the little kids and being able to teach them,” McIntyre said. “[When we work with the kids] We basically become the teachers for them. We make their lesson plans, we teach them specific categories, and depending on what you draw for that week, you teach that specific category.”
Mikaila said that her duties extended to teaching a subject for a week, providing snacks, reading, and taking on other mentoring responsibilities.
Naturally, all that work comes with its challenges.
“I guess that one of the biggest challenges was just navigating everything,” McIntyre said. “I really want to make something to do with children part of my career, and granted it’s going to be somewhat part of my career, but it’s not the main focus.”
In addition to working through her senior year at Highland, Mikaila is attending Granite Technical Institute to earn her pharmacy technician license. She has also found a way to link FCS and the job of a pharmacy technician.
“For me, Consumer Science involves pharmacy tech, as well as family, because you are showing people how to use the right medications, and it is the science of consumers, because you are selling medications, and teaching [families] how to use them, and you’re helping families get rid of sicknesses, or just helping them feel more comfortable in general, McIntyre said. “And for me, besides the children, pharmacy is something I want to make my career, so pharmacy has also been a huge part for me.”
Mikaila’s sister Mikenzie says that her aptitude for Family and Consumer Sciences makes sense.
“We kinda grew up without a mother figure, so it has been kinda crazy to see Mikaila step into that type of position, and she does it all very well. She’s always wanted to work with children, whether or not that has been teaching or something. At a very young age it was teaching.” Mikenzie said. “It’s a lot of schooling and a lot of work, and she is very dedicated to doing it. It’s crazy.”
Regardless of the amount of work, Mikaila still loves Family and Consumer Science.
“I think that Family and Consumer Science is a really good topic to actually allow you to find out who you are and to test your limits and to find out what you like and don’t like.”