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McDuffie's Boutwell to walk in steps of US leaders

This spring, more than 250 outstanding middle school students from across the United States and Canada, including Brea Boutwell of Thomson, will take part in an extraordinary leadership conference in Washington, D.C. Themed the Legacy of American Leadership, the Junior National Young Leaders Conference (JrNYLC) introduces young people to the rich tradition of leadership throughout American history, while helping them develop their own leadership skills.

Brea is a seventh grade student at Thomson Middle School. She was nominated by her teachers and guidance counselors. Brea is the daughter of Dwayne Boutwell of Thomson.

"The aim of the Junior National Young Leaders Conference is to inspire students to recognize their own leadership skills, measure their skills against those of current and former leaders and return home with new found confidence in their ability to exercise positive influence within their communities," said Mike Lasday, executive director of the Congressional Youth Leadership Council, the organization that sponsors JrNYLC. "Young people are not only welcome in Washington, D.C., they actually keep this city and our country running."

During the six-day program, scholars take part in educational activities and presentations, as well as meet with elected officials and key Congressional staff members on Capitol Hill. Students also visit historical sites, such as Harpers Ferry, the National Museum of American History and Washington, D.C.'s monuments and memorials.

In addition to examining notable U.S. Leaders and historic figures, students study the impact of leadership throughout critical periods of American history including the Civil War and Reconstruction, World War II, the Great Depression and the Civil Rights Movement. Upon completion of JrNYLC, students gain a greater sense of understanding of the role of individuals in American democracy, as well as the responsibilities of being a leader.

CYLC is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization. Since 1985, the Council has inspired more than 200,000 young people to achieve their full leadership potential. Over 430 members of the U.S. Congress join the commitment by serving on the CYLC Honorary Congressional Board of Advisors. In addition, more than 40 embassies participate in the Council's Honorary Board of Embassies.

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Web posted on Thursday, April 12, 2007

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