The Summer program began in about 2001. Leadership 2000 PLUS was a part of a pilot program with the KS Health Foundation called Leaderfull Community. Part of the grant was to try ways to take leadership into the community, to the most people, as quickly as possible and document what happened. We had been discussing a Summer Program and begun putting things in place, but this was the impetus to make it happen.
The program was held for freshman students in both Pratt High and Skyline schools on Wednesday evenings, following a format of skill and capacity training similar to the adult training. The response was very good.
For a couple of years, Skyline offered a leadership course during school which cut back on our numbers, but that ceased and numbers arose again. Wednesday evenings were always a worry and somewhat of a deterrent, but seemed the best evening. We kept looking at ways to improve the program and in 2008, after researching other programs, made a change to two, two-day sessions beginning with one right after school, another in mid summer and a wrap up in the fall with a possible project. This seems to work well and we will continue to work in this format and get it refined.
Lisa Coss, alumnus and past board member now the Director of the Summer Program, became involved in other camps throughout the state as well as a program through the Kansas Leadership Center and brought back many ideas to continue to grow the program.
The graduates continue to be a part of the program throughout the rest of their high school years to help facilitate and help the new students feel welcomed, with very satisfactory results. Young people bring great ideas and perspective to discussions and are very welcomed as participants.