Fall Newsletter 2018

"Model the Way"

A huge welcome back from the 2018-2019 State Officers and Leadership Team Members!

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State Officers

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President's Welcome - Ejehi Ihionkhan

Hello, Texas TSA! My name is Ejehi Ihionkhan, and I have the wonderful privilege of serving as your 2018-2019 Texas TSA President. When the Leadership Team met in July, it became evident that there are heaps of great improvements coming to Texas TSA to make this the best year yet.

This year will witness great social media activity brought to you directly by your state officers and Leadership team, so follow us now so you don't miss out! The 2018-2019 school year will also bring a new, organized alumni process that will enable Texas TSA alumni to stay connected and involved. We will also mark the creation of two new scholarships, one of which will offer financial aid to advisors pursuing further education and is named after Bob Behnke and Bud Worley in the dedication of their undying devotion to TSA! We will even see the birth of a new committee dedicated to increasing our fundraising for ACS (Wow!). I encourage you all to reach out to the officers via email if you have any questions at all throughout the year.

At the 2018 National conference in Georgia, Texas TSA displayed its strength in numbers and commitment. We had the largest delegation present, won the “Most Middle School Chapters” and “Most High School Chapters” awards, and our very own Harrison Wissel-Littmann won the esteemed Dr. Bob Hanson Distinguished Student Award. Go Texas!

The National conference, State conference, and the Kerrville Leadership Camp are wonderful opportunities to meet fellow TSA members and continue the legacy of camaraderie that TSA is known for. It is because of inspiring individuals like you all that I was compelled to run for office, so please don't shy away from introducing yourself to the new officers because we truly can’t wait to meet as many of you as possible! Texas TSA’s future is blindingly bright, and I’m positive we will “Model the Way” for years to come.


Ejehi Ihionkhan

2018-2019 Texas TSA President

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Jamaal Mckatte - Vice President

Hello Texas TSA, my name is Jamal Mkatte and I am your 2018- 2019 state vice-president. I am honored to have been elected to this position and cannot wait to help make TSA bigger and better! I am currently a Senior at Harmony School of Innovation Sugar Land High. I first joined TSA in the eighth grade, when a friend begged me to join. I was reluctant at first but am glad I made the decision. I started out with medical competition but later found that I better enjoyed and performed in video making events, these being digital video production and on demand video. Through TSA I have learned many valuable skills, from gaining time management to being a leader. Besides TSA I am involved in my schools Senior Committee, National Honor Society, Track Team, Folk Dance team, and African Student Organization. I enjoy activities such as volleyball, running, swimming, singing, and just hanging out with my friends. I am so glad that I have been given this opportunity and cannot wait to meet and work with all of you!
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Hedhaiah Shwaiki - Secretary

Hello Texas Tsa! My name is Hedaiah (Heidi) Shwaiki, and I am a sophomore at Lamar Cons. High School. I am flourished with honor to say that you all, very crucial members, elected me as your State Secretary for this year! Ever since I was little, I knew it was my destiny to pursue my future as an engineer and become fondly involved with technology. I’ve always loved math and even more, I’ve loved building anything and everything! In 7th grade, when my engineering teacher introduced me to TSA, I knew that it was going to become my number one priority. TSA has shaped me into who I am today, and has helped me recognize what I want to do with my career and future.

This is going to be my fourth year in TSA, and I am severely fortunate to have experienced so many beneficial life lessons from the past years! Campaigning for office was an astounding opportunity that guided me to meet new people and become more social and active in the TSA community. In the coming year, I aspire to not only recompense to TSA, but to expand its recognition and serve alongside the Officers, Leadership team and most significantly, what keeps this organization running, the TSA members! I’m eagerly awaiting to see everyone in the next conference!

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Isaac Brigham - Treasurer

Hey Texas TSA! This is Isaac Brigham and I am honored to be serving you this year as your State Treasurer. I am currently in my senior year at East Early College High School, which also commemorates my sixth year as a proud TSA member. Since joining, I have competed in a variety of events from Tech Problem Solving to the Texas Catapult Contest but by far my favorites would have to be the Technology Bowl and Extemporaneous Speech, both of which I have placed at nationals in. As a state officer, I hope to represent the organization to the best of my abilities at all times. My biggest goals for this year include engaging smaller chapters at our conferences and competitions, as well as raising funds for the American Cancer Society at Kerrville. I also want to ensure that all members of the association feel comfortable enough to approach me with any ideas they have for the benefit of TSA. Whether we are developing our leadership skills at Kerrville or competing against other states at Nationals, Texas TSA members are always pushing the envelope on what it means to exercise with tact and positivity.

When not participating in TSA, I enjoy hanging out with my friends and playing outside at the nearest park. I also hold an office or leadership position with a number of other organizations and activities including the East Early boy's basketball team, FIRST Robotics, BEST Robotics, SECME, and many other STEM programs. Despite this, TSA has always been and continues to be my true home and place of exploration. Thank you Texas TSA for this opportunity and I hope to see you soon!

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Mary Katherine Smith - Sergeant at Arms

Howdy Texas TSA! My name is Mary Katherine Smith and it is my pleasure to serve you as your 2018-2019 Sergeant-At-Arms. This year I will be in Eleventh Grade at Carthage High School where I have been involved in my local chapter of TSA since freshman year. I am beyond excited for this year and I cannot wait to see all that we will accomplish as a state, as well as in our individual chapters. I hope this year grows us as the technical young leaders of the world that we’re meant to be.

Outside of TSA, I am involved in UIL Speech and Debate and a class officer for Student Council. I dance on my school’s drill team as well as at my local studio. I really have a passion for music and dance allows me to express that artsy side of me. A fun fact about myself is that I really LOVE The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. I am also involved in my church’s youth group. Each year I am given the opportunity, through my church, to go on a mission trip to serve the community through the building and remodeling of houses. This has been an important character building experience for me because of the hard work and new found appreciation it has instilled in me which has helped me become a better leader. I compete in On Demand Video as well as Extemporaneous speaking. When I am not working on my TSA projects, I really enjoy community service and serving those with needs around me. Though I may seem like a really busy student, I will always make serving you and TSA my top priority.

This year I hope to have the chance to meet and interact with all the members of TSA. I hope to see you at State Leadership Conference and State Competition. I wish you all the best of luck this year and I encourage you to go out and make a difference in this world just like TSA has made a difference in all of our lives.

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Alyssa Olvera - Reporter

Hello Texas TSA! I’m Alyssa Olvera and I am so excited to announce that I am the State Reporter! I have been a part of the State Leadership team for two years and am now moving on to my third as an officer. Some interests and hobbies about me you should know, is my love for fashion and photography. I have always loved the creative side of technology and my favorite past times are to go to thrift shops and submit my photographs to different competitions both within and outside of my school. My favorite competitions within TSA are, Photographic Technology and Biotechnology Design. I have been involved with TSA since my freshman year, and now being a senior I see how much we have grown. From new systems implemented, moving from Waco to Fort Worth, and the overall growth of the club. I see that we have not only grown as a club, but as individuals as well. It is an exciting new school year and I am so excited to meet you all once again this upcoming Leadership Conference and State competition!

Leadership Team Members

Andrew Phillips

What is up TSA Nation! It’s me, Andrew Phillips, here to talk a bit about myself. This is my second year on the Texas TSA Leadership Team. Since the last time you heard from me, quite a few things have changed. I am now a Sophomore at George Ranch High School in Richmond, Texas. I have officially become an Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America. And, I put in over 200 hours as Lead Naturalist with the Houston Zoo. As for my TSA events, I competed in Animatronics, Chapter Team, and Future Technology Teacher at all stages of competition. I hope to see everyone at Leadership Camp and State Conference!

Angelica Ann Littles

Ciao Texas TSA!

My name is Angelica Littles and I am a part of the 2018-2019 State Leadership Team. It is a privilege to be serving alongside the Texas TSA state leadership team and a complete honor to be serving over 30,000 members to the best of my ability. Currently, I am a Junior at Pebble Hills High School in El Paso, Texas and serving as my chapter’s Vice President. I have been a proud TSA member since freshman year after being introduced to it by my engineering teacher. Ever since, I have been an active member and competing in events such as Biotechnology Design and Essays on Technology. TSA has taught me that no matter how hard something may be, you can always succeed as long as you work hard. Besides TSA, I enjoy volunteering, watching movies/tv shows, practicing calligraphy, learning about different cultures, and browsing Instagram to see the latest interior designs and fashion trends. Again, thank you for allowing me to serve you as a member of the Texas TSA State Leadership team. I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity and I cannot wait for this year to unfold. See y’all in Kerrville!

Caroline McCall

Howdy Texas TSA, my name is Caroline McCall. I’m from Bryan, TX, located in the heart of Aggieland (Whoop!). I’m a freshman at Bryan High School, and am one of the founding members of our high school chapter. I’m serving my third year as a chapter president, and am the Brazos Valley Regional Secretary. I have had the pleasure of serving and competing in TSA for three years, and have had the opportunity to attend nationals twice in TEAMS, technical design, and leadership strategies. I will never be able to repay for everything TSA has taught me and will continue to teach me, but I hope that by serving y’all on state leadership, I begin to give back those lessons which I have learned. Outside of TSA, I am a varsity tennis player and a member of the Viking Singers Choir. My involvement in these have showed me how to build strong relationships and increase my accountability and communication skills. I have three older siblings, all students at Texas A&M, and two *adorable* miniature schnauzers. I enjoy binge watching on Netflix, reading, and writing. Texas TSA, I can only begin to tell you how excited I am about this year, and I wish you all the best! See you in Kerrville!

Carla Whelan

Hey Texas TSA, my name is Clara Whelan and I am a Junior at Foster High School in Richmond, Texas. I am so excited to be a member of the state leadership team for this upcoming year! This will be my 4th year as a TSA member and I’m enthralled to extend my leadership reach to the state level. From the moment I joined I have had such a passion for this organization and strived to do my best in everything I do through it. My work as a state leadership member will be no different. My favorite thing about TSA is how it caters to such a massive variety of interests and truly has something for everyone whether it be software design, promotional design, or fashion design. Because of this, there are so many different types of people in TSA, which is one of the reasons why I find it so amazing. My favorite event to compete in is Webmaster, as web development is a big hobby of mine outside of TSA and something that I would love to explore as a career later in life. As for this year’s State Leadership Team, we definitely have a lot in store for the upcoming school year and I can’t wait to see everything transpire. I’m so excited for this year, and I hope you all are too. I can already tell it is going to be amazing. See you in Kerrville!

Gowri Rangu

HOWDY TEXAS TSA! My name is Gowri Rangu, and I am honored to be a part of the Texas TSA State Leadership and grateful to work with the state officer team. As a freshman at Longview High School, I cannot wait to see what TSA has to offer at the high school level. In my two years as a member, this organization has given me lasting memories and opportunities that have allowed me to grow. Now I hope to give back to TSA and provide the same opportunities I had to you guys.

Aside from my love for TSA, you can find me on the courts playing tennis, playing a few notes on my violin, or curled up on my bed watching Netflix. As for TSA, I love competing in speaking events such as chapter team and prepared speech. This year I will work hard for Texas TSA until we are the loudest, largest organization TSA has ever seen. I can’t wait to meet all of y’all at Kerrville! See y’all soon!

Sam Jacobs

Howdy Texas TSA! My name is Sam Jacobs and I currently attend Nacogdoches High School as a junior. TSA has become my main passion throughout my high school career. I’ve been very blessed to experience the many educational, leadership, and bonding opportunities that our great organization provides us with. My favorite events tend to be the events that utilize the CNC router. Outside of school my hobbies include music, fishing, jet skiing, and woodworking. I always give 100% to every club, school activity, personal hobby, and project that I work on. I hope to further apply this work ethic to TSA, and help make things better than ever before. I hope that all of you have an amazingly productive year, and continue to push yourselves further towards success. See you in Kerrville!

TSA's Impact

Since 1978, The Technology Student Association has been making a difference in the lives of it’s members; TSA is truly an organization unlike any other and now with over 250,000 members it’s leaving an indelible mark on this world of future successful citizens. Never have I been apart of a club that challenged me as an individual, but also allocated the support and love of one big happy family. It’s amazing the bonds we create all across the state, as well as on a national level. Here we are taught how to sharpen our talents, so that we can be successful in the REAL world. We are pushed above and beyond our limits in order to accomplish task we first thought impossible. We are better equipped with leadership through this wonderful organization. Through TSA we are able to grow into the men and women we are called to be. Thank you Texas TSA for all you do for us, we as members are forever grateful for the lessons learned, the love shared and the memories made! - Mary Katherine Smith

Annual State Leadership Conference

Hello Texas TSA! I am so excited to be starting off this school year and hope you are too! Your State Team has been working hard on getting everything prepared for our Annual Texas TSA Leadership Conference that is being held at the Lions Camp in Kerrville. The conference will be held Thursday November 29th through Saturday December 1st.
At this camp there will be fun activities planned for you to get engaged and involved with people from other TSA chapters across Texas. It is an exciting time to make friends! The Leadership Team and State Officers are working on creating exciting ways for you to learn and put into practice skills to become a great leader. Another awesome and exciting thing we do at the camp is fundraiser, our Glow Bash, TSA Cardboard Boat Regatta Race and our bingo night are all fun ways to take part in the donations to American Cancer Society. So remember to speak to your advisor about attending this year’s State Leadership Conference. All the registration information can be found at the link below. See you there! - Alyssa Olvera

Contact Us

Be sure to check out our social media pages, we post about upcoming events and important reminders to keep everyone updated throughout the year!

Instagram: @texastsa

Snapchat: @texastsa