Left to right are Luiz Gonzalez, Araceli Ruvalcaba, Ellyn Lopez and Zack Hurt, who returned from a Rotary trip to Crestline, California. Submitted Photo.

Four Beaver Dam High School juniors recently returned from a 3-day Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) trip held at the Thousand Pines Camp in Crestline, California.  RYLA is not a camp intended to teach leadership skills, rather it offers an opportunity for high school juniors to learn with other students from around District 5300 the principals involved in becoming a better leader.

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is an intensive, two-and-a-half-day leadership training program for high school juniors in District 5300 chosen for their leadership potential. In addition to the development of leadership skills, RYLA is meant to develop understanding of Rotary among youth participants and reinforce and provide recognition for their efforts, accomplishments, skills and potential as leaders.  Rotarians serve as facilitators to the students’ learning and discovery, as well as role models of Rotary ideals of the Four Way Test and Service Above Self.

The Rotary Club of Mesquite sponsored these BDHS juniors and was blown away by their response to this worthwhile experience.  The students attended Tuesday’s Rotary meeting and spoke about their experience with the other 380 students attending from around Rotary District 5300.  Activities at the camp are designed so that each student has the opportunity to meet new people, exchange ideas and problem solve in teams.  They learn about issues in other parts of the world and are encouraged to find ways to become good global citizens through service to their community and the world.