The Kansas Youth Leadership Academy completed its second middle and high school academy seminars on Oct. 17-19 on the Fort Hays State University campus. Ninety-five students and sponsors from middle and high schools throughout the northwest section of the state attended the day-long seminars.
The academy was developed last summer by FHSU's Center for Civic Leadership, a division of the leadership studies program that targets non-traditional college students in leadership. After launching in June, KYLA recruited Certified Leadership Trainers to travel to schools throughout the state to assist 6th- to 12-grade students with leadership training.
During the morning leadership sessions students focused on developing personal skills through an integrity session focusing on personal responsibility and a leadership session focusing on the importance of followership. In the afternoon, the focus turned to team dynamics and effective communication with an emphasis in problem solving, and diversity appreciation with an emphasis in acceptance and promoting positive attitudes.
"I felt that both days went really well," said Kandra Craig, Assistant Director of KYLA. "The facilitators did an excellent job and the students responded well."
Various leadership activities were used throughout the day to provide hands-on experiences. Some of the activities included "Responsibility Comics," "Better Living Through Followership," "To Build a Levee" and "What Do You Really Know About Others." Each of these activities served as a tool to teach participants the importance of teamwork and understanding other individuals.
"The kids did a great job with the activities," said Samantha Butler, FHSU graduate and curriculum specialist of KYLA. "It was easy to see how their teambuilding skills improved over the course of the day. It's awesome to see kids who are so reserved in the beginning step up and really start using what they are learning about leadership."
Middle and high school students who participated in the seminar are listed by school.
Felten Middle School, Hays: Kyle Hedlund; Vern Dreiling; Elizabeth Rupp; Whitney Gerstner; Tyler Rathke; Corbin Albert; Ben Davidson; Alyssa Murray; Amaris Morin; Sheradin Fabrizius; sponsor, Jo Dare.
Stockton Junior High School: Hayley Strutt; Carlee Lindsey; MaryLynn Griebel; Brooke Waller; Haley Dix,; Molly Schleicher; sponsor, Elton Armbrister.
Solomon Junior High School: Ryan Stark; Brad Jamison; Melissa Klucas; Brett Hinkson.
Rawlins County Junior High School: Wendy Fields; Jill Bergling; Max Mickunas; Jorden Mizer; Anthony Vrbas; Lance Finley; Cody Green; Sam Carroll; Brett Carroll; Taylor Carroll; Ashleigh Peterson; sponsors, Jacque Leitner and Deb Portschy.
Otis-Bison Middle School: Matt Suppes; Cody Tuzicka; Kayti Davis; Jesse Flax; Emily Kelly; Spencer Boone; Jacob Crotinger; Kristin Wondra; Mackenzie Boone; Zachary Stejskal; sponsors, Deanna Spears and Janelle Maier.
Damar Junior High School: Nicole Armbrister.
Plainville Elementary School: Kylee Pywell; Sara Eichman.
Hays High School: John Bowerman; Lynae Wasinger; Mark Harbaugh; Allison Chretien; Drew Steffan; Michael Billinger; Emily Disney; Karen Bailey; Josh Dreiling; Dane Dreiling; Brett Brungardt; Christina Engel; Allison Groff; Valerie Harris; Liz Kreutzer; Katie Kuhn; Claudia Leos-Guzman; Stephanie Onyeador; Courtney Daily; Jennifer David; Courtney Kanzenbach; Simona Korbe; Chelsea Linenberger; Levi Madden; Rex Onyeador; Kevin Phaen; Michael Raven; sponsors, Gail Kuehl, Jeanie Michaelis and Sherri Matlock.
Great Bend High School: Justin Moyers; Brent Pinkall; Alex Keenan; Sierra Burkes; sponsor, Becky Stubbs.
Ellis High School: Brittany Kroeger; Lex Feyh; Rowdy Wichman; Jaymi Riedel; Emily Keller; Kelsi Schoenthaler; Jennifer Jacques; Todd Flinn; Justin Gnad; John Tricks; Randy Hamel; sponsor, Don Long.