Students Tell of Their Experiences at RYLA and Boys and Girls State.
Baylor Webb, grandson of Jan Reyes, talked with the club about his experiences at the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA); Alyssa Hauck, daughter of Barb Hauck, talked with the club about her experiences at Girls State; James Hill, son of Mike Hill, outlined his experiences this summer at Missouri Boys State.
The club sponsored each of these young people to attend their respective camp.
The Missouri RYLA Academy is a 4-day, 3-night training program for high school Sophomores and Juniors who exhibit a desire for community service. Developed by some of Missouri's top professional educators, the curriculum is designed to identify and enhance the qualities of Servant Leadership for each participant, train them on how to successfully implement a service project, and inspire them to live a lifetime of "Service Above Self." In addition, participants are exposed to all the programs and values Rotary has to offer. Established in 1992, Missouri RYLA Academy has trained and inspired more than 2500 students state wide. It is currently a model for RYLA Academies worldwide.
Missouri Girls State (MGS) was first established in 1940 as one of 11 Girls State programs in the nation. The first session was held at William Woods University (then College), Fulton, in the summer of 1940 under the direction of Lutie Long Smith. There were 213 citizens in attendance the first year and Juanita Curry was elected Governor. The citizens were divided into 3 counties -- Scott, Price, and Barton; and there were six cities -- Pershing, Koontz, Boone, Crowder, Lewis, and Clark. MGS was located at William Woods for 17 sessions, with no sessions held in 1943 and 1945 due to war. Following a fire at the college in 1959, MGS transferred to Christian College, Columbia, in 1960. In 1961, the program moved to Stephens College, Columbia, due to the need for a larger facility. The program returned again to William Woods University in 1976, where it remained until 1998 when it moved to Central Missouri State University, Warrensburg (now University of Central Missouri).
Currently, MGS has 760 citizens in 7 counties and 21 cities. Our cities and counties are named after famous or important people to the American Legion Auxiliary and the State of Missouri or those individuals who have contributed in some way to the success of the Missouri Girls State program.
American Legion Boys State of Missouri is an eight-day hands on experience in the operation and fundamentals of government. Missouri Boys State draws together the best and brightest high school juniors to help lead them down the path of individual success and leadership through "doing," not just learning.
One idea paramount above any other at Missouri Boys State: That the individual is the one with the power to change the world. Whether athlete or politician, journalist or scientist, each and every one of us has the power to make a difference in the world. Using our democratic system as a basis, we equip the participants, or citizens, each year to construct their own state, utilizing the core values that hold true in our everyday lives. We teach the need for competition, the value of public service, the strength of the individual voice and vote. By reinforcing these basic American ideals, we help to shape the future of our society. This is what the American Legion Boys State of Missouri program is all about. Citizens of The American Legion Boys State of Missouri are eligible to receive college credit and scholarships for participating and successfully completing Boys State.