SkillsUSA Nationals- LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY

 

JUNE 19th-26th: National SkillsUSA Leadership Conference

 

I had an amazing time at SkillsUSA Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky. There were a lot of airport shenanigans as well as hotel fun.
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Lots of cute snaps on the airplane and at the airport.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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13717942_10205000014559608_172541488_oI spent a majority of my time setting up and presenting my project with two other people. We had lots of fun meeting new people and spent so much time together that we ended up getting on each others nerves. In the end, I was pretty happy with how our project turned out. However, we were pretty exhausted by the end of the week.

Thankfully, we had the best Krispy Kreme donuts to save the day!

 

 

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Models of Excellence Dinner

We had a lot of good food at the Models of Excellence Dinner at the Kentucky Derby. It was one of the main highlights of my trip!

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I also had a lot of fun hanging out with the Texas delegation and voting with them on the last day of NSLC. Even though I was coerced into waking up early to help be a replacement for a delegate.

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This was the Texas Delegation marching around before the Awards Ceremony. Also, we got to rep our state with stereotypical Texas cowboy hats.

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So incredibly proud of our chapter for winning the Models of Excellence Award which is one of the highest honors that SkillsUSA chapter can receive.  There was a lot of hard work involved to achieve this award. 13502984_10157025826940591_2337684219526336238_o

We ended with a silver win, which we were slightly disappointed about but cheered nonetheless.

Our trip home was bittersweet. I had a blast at my last NLSC and I have to say that I owe a lot to SkillsUSA. Nevertheless, I was glad to be home.

xoxo,

Ellen Signature

 

But All Lives Matter, Right?

All Lives Matter.

Before you even read the rest of the post, there are going to be people out there who immediately have these two assumptions about me: “oh… she’s one of those bigoted bloggers blasting their opinions out on the internet” and/or “she’s one of those ‘anti- black lives matter’ people.” Both of these statements I can understand; however, I don’t believe myself to be either of those two things. When I first saw the whole “Black lives matter” movement going around social media, to be completely honest, the first thought I had was “but, don’t all lives matter?” This was before I even heard about the ongoing controversy between ‘all lives matter’ and ‘Black lives matter.’

Recently, there have been a lot of analogies to explain why the ‘all lives matter’ response is not the right one towards the ‘Black lives matter’ movement. I hope even those who completely do not agree with ‘Black lives matter’ can at least be somewhat open-minded on why people are unhappy about the current situation. When one group is facing extreme hardship, it seems like the immediate response now is to undermine their hardship rather than draw support for them.

Another major issue  appears to be what ‘all lives matter’ seem to represent to people. There’s the idea that supporting equality all around is trying to deny black justice; however, that is not what ‘all lives matter’ means to me or at least what I believe it should mean. ‘All lives matter’ needs to gain a new connotation– it needs to be representative of the community coming together to support everyone. I’ve heard of several instances where people advocating for ‘all lives matter’ didn’t even realize that it has slowly become an anti-blacks message. On the other hand, these people also need to recognize that ‘Black lives matter’ does not mean that Blacks are trying to say they matter more, but rather that during such a difficult time with many black losses, people are using this phrase to highlight their struggle as well as utilize this message in their fight for injustice.

As someone who is very close to the Asian American community, I’ve heard countless arguments against ‘Black lives matter.’ There have been and still are many injustices towards the Asian American community, and the new idea in this community seems to be that advocating for ‘Black lives matter’ is putting justice for Blacks to be of far more importance than justice for any other minority. I completely  sympathize with the Asian community on this issue. We don’t go around seeing ‘Asian lives matter’ or ‘Hispanic lives matter’ written in bold letters across posters for protest. And, I even initially did feel that ‘Black lives matter’ was a polarizing statement as if to say Black equality is what’s more important than any other race equality. HOWEVER, there are many things that Blacks face each day that many other minority groups do not. There have not been as many deaths that are so closely race-related. As a community, we need to come to an understanding about ‘Black lives matter’– from what I’ve gathered, this statement is not meant to make others feel like their fight is lesser. The Black community just wants people to stand with them. Asian American community, if we hope to change the issues with our own inequality in America, then we must also learn to stand by others in their struggle.

With more and more deaths and shootings, we begin to forget about people as individuals. It seems like everyone is becoming more distracted with the battle between ‘all lives matter’ and ‘Black lives matter’ where we fail to remember that in each death there’s a person that a family has lost– a person with hopes and dreams just like the ones that you and I have for the future. A person’s life that has been cut short unjustly. In fact, every life that has been cut short is a tragedy that we should be mourning for regardless of race, gender, sexuality or anything.

I’m not really sure what world-changing ideas that an eighteen year-old girl (who is a fairly privileged Asian American female that has only experienced a surface-level amount of inequality, injustice and racism) can share to resolve an issue like black injustice but what I do know is that this is not the way.