Some people are natural-born leaders, while others need a little encouragement to step into those roles. For certain, it is critical for teens today to develop real leadership skills that will help them excel in today’s increasingly complex environment. The 2013 LEAD program offers just such an opportunity for rising 10th, 11th and 12th graders in Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s Counties and the deadline is fast approaching.
Entering its fourth year, this teen leadership workshop, sponsored by Leadership Southern Maryland and a bevy of local supporters, gives young adults a chance to meet and collaborate with peers from throughout their regional community, learn and apply social and critical thinking skills, and, of course, also have a fun and memorable summer experience.
The three night/ four day residential program is housed at beautiful St. Mary’s College of Maryland in Historic St. Mary’s City, giving students a chance to experience life on a college campus. LEAD is facilitated by Maryland Leadership Workshops with an experienced staff of young professionals with various leadership backgrounds in education, youth services, business, law, and student organizations. These mentors lead the delegates through hands-on workshops, engaging activities and thought-provoking group projects.
With the focus on leadership, experience, advocacy and discipline, LEAD offers teens the tools to not only realize their own potential and strengthen positive life skills, but to challenge them in the way they think about and take ownership of their communities.
Blind registration allows for a group of young people from diverse cultures and socio-economic backgrounds to come together as individuals, but graduate LEAD as part of a collaborative community. For many, the LEAD experience is a transforming one and marks the beginning of the participation, passion and innovation the teens will bring back to their own counties.
Last year’s graduates shared the impact LEAD had on them on the group’s blog and Facebook page.
Leonardtown High School senior Nelson Gorrick will attend the Naval Academy and said, “The LEAD program made me better at setting and attaining goals, improving my communication skills and fine-tuning my group-work skills.”
Charles County’s Caroline Haddaway is a field hockey, co-captain, member of the robotics team, active member of best buddies and was instrumental in establishing an anti-bullying Stand for the Silent club in her school. She shared, “The skills I learned during my last two summers in the LEAD program have really helped me focus and take matters into my own hands. I am more confident in setting goals for myself and my accomplishments have served to better myself and also my community.”
Jared Kimmey, a Great Mills High School junior, said, “LEAD has not only helped improve my overall leadership skills but it has also helped me open up to people faster.”
He, like many other delegates formed longstanding friendships across county lines and continue to reap the benefits from their LEAD experience, as do their respective communities.
Engaging directly in a unique community service project, participants take part in LEAD on the Waterfront, a collaborative project with the St. Mary’s River Watershed Association educating and taking action on oyster restoration in the Chesapeake Bay.
Teens will find this to be a summer experience like no other, with plenty of time for relaxation and reflection to accompany the rigor of this transformative program.
The application and registration deadline is May 1, 2013. Visit www.leadsomd.org for more information and to apply. Applications are accepted via online or standard mail.
Cost of $375 includes room, board, tuition and fees. A limited number of scholarships are available. Have additional questions? Call 240-725-5469 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.