Family and Consumer Sciences adviser Dawn Mallette receives national award

She advises family and consumer sciences students, teaches family and consumer sciences classes, manages and supervises student teachers, runs a seminar, coordinates distance education and online learning for the Colorado State University School of Education, and teaches in the Center for Educator Preparation. If that sounds like a super hero, then all Dawn Mallette needs is a cape and killer theme music. Now, her efforts have earned her a national distinction.Dawn Mallette

A national award

In recognition of her outstanding service, Mallette has been awarded the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America National Distinguished Service Award. This award is given to individuals providing exemplary service to their state organization and the FCS profession.

While Mallette is on the executive board for the Colorado Chapter of FCCLA, she was not aware that she had been nominated for the award until someone asked her if she would be able to attend the event where she would receive recognition. The surprise came from Carla Sullivan, a former student of Mallette’s who is now a FCS teacher at North Arvada Middle School, and Robert VanDyke, the state FCCLA adviser and assistant program director at the Colorado Community College System.

Beyond her exemplary service to CSU, Mallette was nominated because of her annual “Say Yes to FCS” reception, her support for teacher candidate assistance at the state FCCLA conference, and her involvement in the lives of current and former FCCLA state officers.

A heart for service

FCCLA Award Plaque“I hope my advisees see me as a caring, approachable, and
hands-on adviser,” said Mallette, “I get to know my advisees
well and support their individual needs. I try to encourage
them to make wise decisions and advocate for them in their job and career searches. We develop a strong relationship, one that I tell them will last for our lifetimes.”

Mallette enjoys seeing many of these former students repeatedly as they become teachers in public schools.

“Advising is about helping students find their niche and knowing that they are excited about their opportunities when they graduate,” explained Mallette, “I want my students to be prepared for their lives ahead, as well as to love what they end up choosing as their career. To do that, they need to choose wisely while they are at CSU. I tell the freshmen when they come in, ‘I want you to enjoy these four years of your life and take in all of the opportunities available at CSU, but
remember what you’re here for.’”

About FCS

The family and consumer sciences major provides students with a focus on consumer and family well-being, growth and development of family members, and the relationship of households to their environment. Students who plan to become teachers can choose the FCS education concentration, which focuses on relationships, personal development, life management skills, teen challenges and choices, interior design, textile and fashion design, nutrition and food, balancing work and family, and general employability skills.

The interdisciplinary major brings together courses in human development, family studies, nutrition and foods, consumer sciences, and apparel and merchandising.

“Skills that I learned as a family and consumer sciences major have provided me with the opportunity to assist others and prepare students to impact the lives of individuals, families, and their community,” said Mallette.

To learn more about the Family and Consumer Sciences program, see

The Family and Consumer Sciences program is part of the School of Education in CSU’s College of Health and Human Sciences.