St. Johnsbury Academy sophomores Haley Edmondson and Connor McCarthy recently attended the Hugh O'Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Seminar at Vermont Technical College in Randolph. Haley and Connor were selected to participate in the seminar by the Social Studies department faculty members based on their leadership potential.
The annual Vermont conference is part of an international program founded in 1958 by actor Hugh O'Brian to encourage young people to realize their leadership potential, empowering them to "make a positive difference within our global society." Each year, nearly 9,000 tenth graders from public and private schools throughout the United States take part in the sessions. HOBY-style programs also take place in several countries worldwide.
According to HOBY's website, "HOBY's flagship program, the State Leadership Seminar (LS) is designed to help high school sophomores to recognize their leadership talents and apply them to become effective, ethical leaders in their home, school, workplace and community. Selected students attend our three- or four-day seminars and participate in hands-on leadership activities, meet leaders in their state, and explore their own personal leadership skills while learning how to lead others and make a positive impact in their community. The seminar curriculum is based on the Social Change Model of Leadership and develops leadership from three perspectives: Personal Leadership, Group Leadership, and Leadership for Society."
Connor McCarthy said, "The HOBY seminar did not just tell you how to be a leader, the seminar taught me how to lead."
David Eckhardt, chair of the SJA Social Studies department said, "The department is looking forward to these young leaders sharing the knowledge they gained from their participation in this seminar in their local communities and on campus in the years to come."
Headmaster Tom Lovett said, "As a considerable number of leaders in the Class of 2014 graduate, we look to students like Connor and Haley to step into those leadership positions. I am excited about their sharing the skills and talents they gained at HOBY, and I am especially excited by the strength of character they will bring to our student leadership groups."