Sponsorship underway for 2014 Boys State
By Susan Junker & Judith Pannebaker
Pictured: Photo by Judith Pannebaker
2013 Boys State participants and their parents include, from left, Wyatt Ellis, Kelly Ellis, DJ Dabney, Benjamin Dabney, ryan Little, turner Warren, Marty Bauml, Kyle Bauml, Diane Bauml, Kyle Wilson, Pam Wilson and Chris Wilson. Boys State participants not pictured are Corey Jennings, Averie Mansfield, John Derry and Isaac Weltens.
"For admission into Texas A&M, we value leadership development in our applicants and look favorably on those who have been selected to attend the Boys State program," noted Dr. Alice Reinarz, assistant provost for enrollment at Texas A&M University. "We view this program as one that brings together students who have exhibited strong academic potential, solid leadership skills, dedicated commitment to service, and strength in character."
Reinarz's sentiment was underscored by American Legion Post 157 Commander Charlie Baker as he addressed Bandera County Boys State participants on Sunday, Feb. 22.
"When your application arrives at Texas A&M and they see that you attended Boys State, your application will go to the top of the pile - if your grades are high enough," Baker said.
Numerous other universities and military academies across the country also look for participation at the American Legion Boys State as a significant differentiator among applicants.
Baker told Boys State participants that they would learn how government works. "Ask questions, get involved, run for an office and politick a little," he advised. "You'll make friends that you'll have for the rest of your lives. Last year, every young man we sponsored was elected to an office, but to be elected you've got to get involved."
Last year, with the support of local business and individual sponsors, the Bandera American Legion Post 157 and Lakehills American Legion Post 410 sponsored six Bandera High School juniors in the Boys State program. This year, 11 young men and three girls have been nominated to attend and just four sponsorships remain. Expenses for this training and transportion are paid for by the local Legion and sponsors.
Those interested in growing future community leaders are urged to contact Post 157 Commander Charlie Baker at 830-796-7528 or stop by the post on 12th Street.
Additional information for educators, parents and sponsors is available at: http://texasboysstate.com/ and a brochure at http://txboysstate.com/includes/docs/2014_brochure.pdf.