The Community Action Partnership of the Greater Dayton Area recently held a graduation ceremony for 12 youth ages 14–18 who completed the Youth Leadership Program offered through the agency’s Youth Empowerment Center.
The Youth Leadership Program helps prepare young people for competent, compassionate and responsible community leadership, according to Sean L. Walton, Director of Youth Initiatives for the Community Action Partnership of the Greater Dayton Area.
“The six-month program helps create compassionate, competent, responsible leaders to meet today’s challenges,” said Walton. “We see our young people as leaders and we expect them to lead. They know that we are equipping them with the tools to be effective leaders.”
Anedra Million, vice principal at Amanda Elementary School in Middletown, presented the keynote address. She spoke of being born to teenage parents and her difficult youth that included many fights and struggles to find her identity and sense of belonging. Million also had words of encouragement for the students.
“I challenge everyone here today to be steadfast, unstoppable and unmovable in your quest to strive towards excellence,” Million said. “I challenge you to be more than average. Stand up and stand out. Don’t let anybody else define who you are. I challenge you to be everything you can and to reach out for your dream.”
Joyce E. Price, Vice President & COO of the Community Action Partnership, praised the students for their commitment to the leadership program, noting that the students do not receive academic credit or other incentives to participate.
“You completed the program because of your commitment to growth and development,” Price said.