Katie Finney

Major: Women’s Studies
Hometown: Chico, CA
Class: Sophomore
Program Position: Facilitator | Freshman Leadership Opportunity (FLO)

How did you first get connected with Freshman Leadership Opportunity (FLO)?
I have always been passionate about leadership, and I wanted to choose a campus that reflected and fostered that passion. While looking at different campuses, the Freshman Leadership Opportunity program here at Chico State really stood out to me. After choosing Chico, my main goal was to join FLO. From there, I was just lucky enough to have really wonderful people working for FLO who believed in me and my potential as a leader.

How would you describe your role as a facilitator with FLO?
FLO is a program made up of 50 amazingly wonderful Chico State freshmen. My job as a facilitator is to work with these freshmen to create meaningful relationships, develop leadership skills, connect students to Chico State programs, and have a ton of fun. I also develop curriculum for the year and lead large group meetings, while working closely with the same 10 freshmen throughout the year to create deeper connections and act as a mentor/personal guide/friend. I’m very blessed to say that my job is getting to hang out and work with some of the best freshman Chico State has to offer and to help develop the future leaders of our campus.

What does working for FLO do for you personally, professionally, or academically?
FLO has honestly given me more than I could really put into words. Some of my best friends have been through FLO. FLO has really been what has made Chico State my home. FLO gave me a family, a “home,” and an outlet to do what I’m passionate about. It has also connected me with so many people in leadership positions here at Chico State. I get to work alongside people who are just as enthusiastic about leadership and making a difference on our campus as I am. All in all, FLO has been my saving grace here at Chico State. It keeps me excited and grounded at the same time, and I know the connections I have made through this program will last a lifetime.

What do YOU bring to the table in your role as a facilitator at FLO?
What’s so cool about being a facilitator for FLO is that I am allowed the freedom to really make the position my own. I do my best to bring my own loud, passionate, caring personality to everything FLO does. Because FLO is such a diverse program with many different types of students, I am always doing my best to create and inclusive and welcoming environment. I want to make sure all of our students feel respected and validated. Being a part of FLO is an everyday learning experience. As much as I bring to FLO, the program gives so much more back to me.

What are your career plans and how does your job with the Associated Students better prepare you for that path?
As of right now, I would really love to work with or develop a program that aims to empower, develop and strengthen young women as leaders in their own lives and in their communities. I think it’s so important that young people know the power they have to make real social change. Working for Associated Students has connected me with many people and programs who also share this passion.