FHSU grant of $5,000 goes to Kansas City's Sumner Academy

Principal Mary Viveros of the Sumner Academy of Arts and Science was presented with a check for $5,000 Thursday, Feb. 8, by Fort Hays State University President Edward H. Hammond as part of the university's partnership with the school.

This is the second year of the partnership, which was formed in 2005 from a desire on the part of FHSU officials to help students make their high school experience more meaningful and to boost the university's profile in eastern Kansas. Among the opportunities often mentioned to add meaning to the high school experience is the addition of service-learning initiatives. The partnership primarily focuses on helping students develop and implement a social change project.

Sumner Academy may use its grant for the social change project or for other activities that benefit students. A major community project for Sumner students will be a neighborhood cleanup in April, similar to the school's service project last year, which was a large school and neighborhood cleanup carried out in conjunction with National Youth Service Day

Another part of the partnership is student leadership training. FHSU's Kansas Youth Leadership Academy (KYLA) traveled to Sumner Academy on Nov. 29 to facilitate a training session for a group of student leaders.

"That was great," said Cathie Klein, KYLA director. "We spent a good part of the day with Sumner students in a variety of activities focusing on leadership skills." A group of Sumner students will also be invited the KYLA's summer high school camp on the FHSU campus from June 19 to June 22.

"They will spend four days and three nights here," said Klein. During that time, students will take part in camp activities designed "to engage students in enhancing their leadership skills, with additional focus on character development and civic responsibility," she said.

KYLA is a comprehensive program designed to promote youth leadership development throughout the state of Kansas. The academy’s primary emphasis is to provide young people with strong character, moral values, a civic attitude and an educational experience that fosters leadership development among all participants.

The Sumner Academy of Arts and Science is a nationally ranked, five-year college preparatory magnet school in Kansas City, Kan., USD 500. FHSU, located 260 miles west of Kansas City in Hays, serves nearly 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students on campus and another 5,000 through its online degree programs.

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