What single event sponsored by your local American Legion Auxiliary (A.L.A.) Unit can provide our young women, just completing their junior year of high school education, a seven-day mock government program where they learn about civics and American government in a fast-paced, interactive program of campaigning, debating, voting and electing mock local and state leaders?
None other than the A.L.A. Cornhusker Girls State Program held on the city campus of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. The 2012 session will be held June 3–9.
This seven-day “once-in-a-lifetime” experience will offer inspirational, educational, life-changing and fun hands-on involvement in our form of government.
The young women selected on the local level to participate in the program will have a week of learning that is focused on responsible citizenship, love of God and Country, the political process and raising the participants’ awareness of the importance of service–not self, particularly to our Veterans, their families and their communities.
More than seeing and hearing we learn and remember by doing. That’s one reason A.L.A. Cornhusker Girls State has such an impact. For a whole week young women are actively engaged in “doing” government.
The two-party political system is brought to life through setting up and administering city, county and state governments. From campaigning, party rallies and debating to mock legislative sessions and parliamentary procedures the girls are immersed in experiential learning.
The results? Many participants choose a career path involving politics or community service. Some familiar names include Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security and former Governor of Arizona; Jane Pauley, NBC broadcast journalist; Brig. General Michelle Johnson, first woman to serve as Wing Commander, United States Air Force; Ericka Dunlap, Miss America 2004 and reality star on “The Amazing Race;” and Ann Richards, former Governor of Texas. All participants walk away at the end of a very busy week with knowledge about their responsibilities as United State citizens and memories and friendships that will last a lifetime.
A.L.A. Cornhusker Girls State is an all volunteer-sponsored program where many Auxiliary members across the state travel to Lincoln and give of their time, talent and experiences to ensure the participants receive the best we have to offer.
Additionally, local Auxiliary Units cover the cost of delegates to attend this educational week. At times local Units may seek financial assistance from local businesses or organizations to help them sponsor a young woman and those asked have been generous in their support.
Have we caught your attention and interest in being part of the 2012 A.L.A. Cornhusker Girls State Program? Then now is the time to map out your strategy to be selected. Local Units will seek the names of young women from their local school systems and arrange to have a meet and greet session in school for those interested in being selected.
Criteria for selection includes: must have completed your junior year of high or equivalent, have an interest in government and current events, have strong leadership abilities, have an above-average scholastic standing and more.
Information packets will be provided to area school counselors and the local American Legion Auxiliary Unit in January with selection of participants by March 1st.
We ask parents and students to work together on the process. It is known that the program runs for a whole week and if the students have summer jobs they must be able to attend the whole week so contact your employers now and let them know you are interested in this program and could they make arrangements for your absence should you be selected.
To learn more at this time go to www.cornhuskergirlsstate.org. Check in with your school counselor for information received at your school or contact your local American Legion Auxiliary Unit.