School Scene
Fall 2017 
Vol. 11, Issue 3

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In This Issue
LEAP Into Middle School, by Aala Nasir, National TSA President
How Can We Get More Members?, by Jessica Strait, National TSA Vice President
Fall TSA Activities, by Shanda Manasco, National TSA Secretary
Advice to New Chapter Officers, by Simon Jolly, National TSA Treasurer
The College Awareness of TSA Initiative, by Yoshua Torralva, National TSA Reporter
Deadlines Make a Difference, by Preston Crawford, National TSA Sergeant-at-Arms
The Votes Are In!, by the 2017-2018 National TSA Officer Team
The Work to Create a Compromise Amendment Has Begun, by Jessica Strait, National TSA Vice President
LEAP Into Middle School
By Aala Nasir, National TSA President

This year, the 2018-2019 TSA Middle School Competitive Events Guide  has been modified to include TSA's new leadership initiative known as LEAP. This program was launched last year in the 2017-2018 TSA High School Competitive Events Guide , however, it is important to know the guidelines for middle school competitors will be different from high school competitors in two ways.

The first difference is middle school competitors will be required to submit a LEAP document, called a LEAP Response, instead of a resume. The LEAP Response will include information about a leadership activity that middle school members will complete during the current school year by written response to a question or set of questions explaining their leadership experience and how it relates to the Five Practices of the Student Leadership Challenge. The LEAP Response will be scored as part of a semifinalist round in each competitive event at the middle school level.

The second difference between the high school and middle school LEAP programs is no interview is required at the middle school level.

Additionally, LEAP Week will be held November 6-10, 2017. TSA members are encouraged to learn about LEAP and the Five Practices of Becoming an Exemplary Leader, participate in leadership activities during chapter meetings, and take part in conversations about leadership on social media throughout LEAP Week. 

I encourage middle school members to become familiar with the revised 2018-2019 TSA Middle School Competitive Events Guide  and be sure to follow all the guidelines when completing your projects. I cannot wait to see how all of us grow as leaders in the technical world over the course of this school year!

How Can We Get More Members? 
By Jessica Strait, National TSA Vice President
As middle and high schools come back into session this fall there is one thing prevalent in the minds of members everywhere: TSA season has begun once more!

If your chapter is anything like mine your officers will spend countless hours undertaking member registration and planning the first meetings of the year. We ask ourselves the same question every year, before members choose their competitions or pay their dues -- "How can we get more members?" Increasing our membership always becomes one of our biggest goals that we strive towards the entire year.

At the local level, one of the most successful ways we can encourage prospective students to become members of TSA is by showcasing TSA as the amazing organization our members already know it to be. Providing a TSA table at a club sign-up event or even hosting a TSA interest meeting are perfect ways to recruit new members and empower current TSA members and officers to share their enthusiasm with interested students. Marketing templates are available on the TSA website for chapters to use and recruit new members. 

Although explaining the value of TSA to prospective members is critical, I also recommend demonstrating the value of TSA.  A national TSA trophy at the chapter registration table along with photos of your chapter competing at a state or national conference are visual aids that will connect with your peers. Display prototypes from last year's Computer Integrated Manufacturing or a Community Service Video submission at your registration table. Exhibiting what your chapter has accomplished will lead prospective members to realize that they, too, can create their own accomplishments through TSA.

We already know what TSA can offer us; it is now up to us to demonstrate to prospective members that they can have those same opportunities as a part of our 250,000 member family!

Fall TSA Activities
By Shanda Manasco, National TSA Secretary

Fall is a time for getting back into school activities and exploring new opportunities!

In addition to Homecoming and Halloween, we look forward to our own National TSA Week and state TSA leadership conferences.

I strongly encourage members to participate in National TSA Week, October 2-6, 2017. This special week is designed to showcase your love and dedication for TSA. It is a time of remembrance and celebration that also brings awareness to our organization and all it has to offer. See the article, The Votes Are In! in this issue of School Scene to learn the daily themes members across the country chose to celebrate the days of National TSA Week.
If your state has a fall leadership conference I encourage you to take part in it because it will be a wonderful experience. Every leadership conference is different but typically there are leadership and technical sessions as well as guest speakers and competitions offered. These conferences are a great way to get to know chapter members from across the state and create lifelong friendships and memories.
I challenge you to jump out of your comfort zone this fall and try things you have never tried before. Take advantage of what this season has to offer!

Advice to New Chapter Officers
By Simon Jolly, National TSA Treasurer 

As TSA reaches its 40th anniversary this school year our organization embarks on a celebration of success. Chapter officers are critical to the success of TSA and TSA is here to empower you to lead your school's TSA chapter.
The role of chapter officer is one that is integral to ensuring that a chapter succeeds. Chapter officers guide their fellow members through a year in TSA and set the example for the rest of the chapter. As chapter elections take place around the country here are a few pieces of advice for newly elected chapter officers:
  1. Stay connected. Make sure you stay in communication with your officer team, chapter members, and chapter advisor to ensure for a great year.
  2. Listen to the members. While you may now be in a leadership position it is your fellow members who are the ones who put you there. It is your duty to serve your chapter in the best way possible.
  3. Develop a productive program of work. Work with your officer team to set several goals that you and your chapter want to accomplish in the coming year. For example, one goal for your chapter might be to plan to host an American Cancer Society fundraiser. (
  4. Use the many resources available on the TSA website. The TSA website is very comprehensive and will serve you well. Here is where you can locate competitive event updates, leadership information, toolkits, important dates and much more. When you have a question, turn to the TSA website for answers.
National TSA wishes the best of luck to all 2,000+ chapters around the country and looks forward to witnessing a celebration of success throughout the school year!

The College Awareness of TSA Initiative
By Yoshua Torralva, National TSA Reporter
Along the way you have gained valuable learning experiences from TSA that you will use in college or other career paths. However, describing the value of TSA can be tricky when filling out college or work applications. One way to let those who are in a decision making capacity understand the value of TSA is through The College Awareness of TSA Initiative.

This initiative provides a great opportunity for high school seniors to educate college admissions officers about the value TSA members can bring to their campus. On under the For Students tab there is a link to "College Awareness." When you visit this page you will be able to access:
  • A Letter of Support for TSA
  • The College Awareness Business Card
  • A TSA Infographic
These three informational pieces are a great way to introduce TSA as a leading youth STEM organization. If you are already interested in a couple of colleges, reach out to their regional admissions officers by introducing yourself and your interest in the college with the TSA Infographic or the Letter of Support for TSA. By taking this step, regional admissions officers and college admissions offices will become more aware of TSA and understand its value when they see it during your application review.

Another way to explain TSA is to highlight your membership growth through an essay. Be sure to add a link to one of the TSA flyers to the additional information section in the Common Application. 

Deadlines Make a Difference
By Preston Crawford, National TSA Sergeant-at-Arms 
As members of the Technology Student Association we sometimes wait until the last minute to pull together the final pieces of our projects. There are over sixty middle and high school competitions to choose from, all varied yet specific to areas within STEM. One common element to every event is a deadline.

In the early months of the school year it is very important to be aware of important deadlines for both state and national conferences and research the event you have an interest in competing in and discover the deadline(s) as soon as possible. Once you've done this, plan out the year and the steps needed to complete your event(s) on time.

Make a calendar and set dates to work towards and complete your goals.  Believe it or not, it is never too early to start your competitive event. The amount of work you put into your events is important and it would be unfortunate if an event wasn't completed on time thus making you not able to compete. Do yourself a favor by finishing events on time. For more information regarding guidelines for competitive event themes, the general rules of an event, or LEAP Resumes and Responses, be sure to refer to either the 2017-2018 TSA High School Competitive Events Guide or the 2018-2019 TSA Middle School Competitive Events Guide.  

The Votes Are In!
By The 2017-2018 National TSA Officer Team
Thank you for choosing the daily themes for National TSA Week through the national TSA officer Twitter poll!

Below are the final daily themes for the week and a list of ideas from the national officers on how your chapters can celebrate each day of the week. Plan now for what you will post each day. This is our special week. Celebrate your chapter's achievements by preparing a report for an upcoming school board meeting or write an article about the value TSA brings to your school for the school and local newspaper. Post your stories and photos on social media.

Celebrate My TSA Monday, October 2, 2017
  • Go to and sign up for your own MyTSA account where you can catalog your TSA milestones. Here is where you can keep a record of your TSA competitive events and leadership accomplishments. If some of your fellow chapter members haven't started using MyTSA yet, My TSA Monday is the perfect time to help get them started.
  • Each chapter member posts a picture of his/her favorite TSA event and why it is important to their TSA experience.
  • Tweet a statement that demonstrates how TSA has impacted your life.
Celebrate Teammate Tuesday, October 3, 2017
  • Encourage your friends to join TSA
  • Dedicate this day to getting ready for the upcoming competitive event season.  Put together your teams and begin project planning.
  • Write a story about your chapter goals and submit it to your school and local newspaper.
  • Post a photo of your entire chapter team and tweet out one of your chapter goals for the school year.
  • TSA is all about teamwork. Share why it is important to work as a team.
  • Host a chapter bonding activity after school where chapter members can get to know each other better. Be sure to bring food!
Celebrate #WeAreTSA Wednesday, October 4, 2017
  • Share what TSA means to your school. Share a successful fundraiser or service project you do every year or a picture of a competitive event your team excels in. Whatever is special about your chapter make sure you say what it is using #WeAreTSA.
  • Celebrate #WeAreTSA by posting how TSA has helped define you and how your chapter and influenced its growth over the years.
  • Prepare a report to share with your school board on how TSA has positively impacted your school and TSA members.
  • Tweet "TSA has a quarter million members." Share a photo or tweet as to what makes a TSA member unique.
Celebrate Throwback Thursday, October 5, 2017
  • Get together with your chapter and reflect on your accomplishments last year. It is important to look back and see how far you have grown.
  • Celebrate by posting your favorite TSA memories or photos.
  • Reflect on an experience at the beginning of your TSA career by sharing a photo from that time.
  • Post a photo from one of your first TSA chapter meetings, competitions or conferences.
Celebrate Forever TSA Friday, October 6, 2017
  • Share how TSA has made an impact on your life as a student and beyond.
  • Share how TSA will forever impact your future. Share a photo of your chapter. 
  • Celebrate by posting how much TSA means to your school and how you will use what you learned in TSA for the rest of your life.
  • Post the TSA logo and explain how you will help lead the technical world.
  • Register with the National TSA Alumni Association if you have already graduated from high school. 

The Work to Create a Compromise Amendment Has Begun
By Jessica Strait, National TSA Vice President
During the annual business meeting at the national conference in June an amendment was put forth by Missouri TSA to replace the national officer election process currently stated in the TSA Bylaws. This proposed amendment was not officially voted on. Instead, the voting delegates chose to create a committee of state presidents, chaired by the national TSA vice president, to discuss the amendment and return to the 2018 annual business meeting with a compromise amendment.  
The proposed amendment recommended electing national officers by pool voting. This means a national officer candidate either runs for president or in a general "pool" of officers. The five candidates receiving the most votes from that pool would make up the national TSA officer team. 
Currently, according to the TSA Bylaws, national officer candidates run for one of six available offices. Candidates receiving the lowest number of votes per office are dropped off the ballot until one candidate receives a majority. You can view the specifics of the current voting method for electing national officers by reviewing Article IV of the TSA bylaws at .
The committee of state presidents of the charted delegations of TSA will work throughout the fall to develop a compromise amendment for TSA. The information shared by your charted delegation state president will play the primary role in the future of our association's elections.
I am looking forward to working with the committee this year and I encourage you to share your thoughts on this topic with your state delegation president. 

The Technology Student Association fosters personal growth, leadership, and opportunities in technology, innovation, design, and engineering. Members apply and integrate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics concepts through co-curricular activities, competitive events, and related programs.
School Scene (ISSN 1066-341X) is published three times a year by the Technology Student Association, 1914 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1540. Telephone: 703-860-9000; Fax: 703-758-4852. Web site:
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