Posted in News

2016 TYLA Summary

413_wThe Truman Youth Leadership Academy led twenty-one campers through a curriculum of Respect, Responsibility, Discovery, Excellence, and Service as they convened for the fourth installment of the Academy last week. Fifteen girls and six boys participated in activities designed to enhance leadership skills, community service and civic engagement. Highlights of the camp featured a tour and City Council simulation at Columbia City Hall, an examination of the 1948 Berlin Blockade through the White House Decision Center, a service project to clean up Flat Branch Creek and a trip to Jefferson City to tour the Capitol and Supreme Court.

To begin the week, the students first identified their core values (Discovery) and used this information to develop ideal service projects. Next, they performed a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) to assess their organizations and later in the program, revisited their ideas, to discuss impact and changes. They created timelines of service projects they had been involved with and made projections for future endeavors.

Precluding the city council simulation, students played the Representative’s Dilemma, involving acceptance or rejection of a Boone County infrastructure tax, studied policy formation and held elections for mayoral and city council positions (Responsibility). They employed this knowledge in their city council simulation, where they considered, amended and voted on an actual curfew ordinance the City of Columbia is considering implementing for youth.

flat_Branch_cleanupwAt mid-week, the students spent time with Moises Aguayo to learn how to handle difficult dialogues, including highly charged political conversations and hot topics like the 2016 presidential election, same sex marriage, abortion and bullying. They traveled to Flat Branch Creek to spend time on a public service project to remove garbage from the creek and park (Service).

Thursday’s theme was Respect and at the State Historical Society, the students toured the art gallery, examined the political works of Thomas Hart Benton and Caleb Bingham and discussed past Missouri leaders. In the afternoon, the Director of the White House Decision Center, Mary McMurray, presented the Berlin Blockade and students assumed roles in the Truman cabinet, the press and geo-political world to resolve the crisis using actual briefings.  After briefing, discussion and debate, the students elected to use the British airfield, evacuate Berliners, drop supplies and weighed the possibility of deploying the bomb to force the Soviets into submission.

Capping off the week long Academy, staff and studentsMary _Russell traveled to Jefferson City for a guided tour at the Capitol building, (Excellence) which houses the Executive and Legislative branches of Missouri government. The students learned about the state legislative process, observed the General Assembly floor and took in the lavish decoration of the state’s home structure and popular three-point perspective murals.  Following the Capitol tour, the Academy visited the State Supreme Court and Law Library, meeting and speaking with Missouri Supreme Court Judge, Mary R. Russell, who began her career as a law clerk.  The students learned about the judicial system in Missouri as well as the hiring process for judges in the state. She welcomed the students warmly, encouraged feminine leadership and answered questions.

Each day of the Academy ended with a period of reflection. Other activities included the Selfie Scavenger Hunt, developing SMART goals, lunch at local restaurants and games.  The Academy closed its fourth year with the customary Leadership Taps, a quiet ceremony where staff read statements and “tap” campers on the shoulder who demonstrated the leadership characteristics in the readings.

Posted in News

Women Leading the Way in San Antonio

City Manager (Left) - Sheryl Sculley & City Mayor (Right) - Ivy Taylor
City Manager (Left) – Sheryl Sculley & City Mayor (Right) – Ivy Taylor

San Antonio’s Mayor and City Manager are leading by example as they demonstrate the value of increased gender diversity in local government! Their city has been working closely with their local Young Women’s Leadership Academy to develop and encourage their youth to take on challenging positions throughout their education and careers.

Watch their great interview by clicking on our picture or visiting this link to learn more about their exciting local changes!

Posted in Articles

A Day of Remembrance, An Impact of Service

MLK Jr. Day_Rotator New Size

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” – Martin Luther King Jr.

As we return to school, work, and our daily schedules; it is important to remember the historic character of Martin Luther King Jr. Talking with our youth about his moving beliefs can be challenging, but our children might be more prepared than we anticipated!

Check this story for more information on the best way to talk to your children at each stage of their development.

How to Talk to Your Kids About Martin Luther King Any Day of the Year

Posted in Promotions

Worley Street Round Table – Connecting Families to their Schools


Adrian Clifton and her mother, Verna Laboy, created a unique community tool to inform and connect our local families to their schools, resources, and after-school programs called, “Worley Street Round Table.”

It’s a great collaboration for our local area and we encourage our families to discover and enhance their connections to their local schools and community organizations. For more information, follow this story from the Columbia Missourian!