by Friends of NRA Staff - Monday, June 19, 2017
Who’s ready for the best week of the summer? The Youth Education Summit staff is! Well… almost. We are diligently working on the finishing touches to make Y.E.S. 2017 the best summit ever.
This year we are ecstatic to welcome 47 amazing high school sophomores and juniors from across the country representing 35 states, including Alaska and Hawaii! It is always moving to see students from many different backgrounds become lifelong friends during the program, and we trust this year’s class will be no different. Our Y.E.S. students will spend the week in Washington, D.C., learning about leadership, patriotism and U.S. history. But how can we accomplish so much in just one week? Loads of energy and not much sleep! That energy is devoted to discovering NRA programs, exploring museums, honoring our military and discussing current events.
Y.E.S. kicks off with a day at NRA Headquarters. Students meet and listen to staff who oversee some of NRA’s programs and learn about how they can get involved or launch these programs in their local communities. Featured programs include: NRA University, Youth Hunter Education Challenge, National School Shield® and Refuse to be a Victim®. Other highlighted activity at NRA include a visit to the NRA Range and a tour at the National Firearms Museum.
Throughout the summit, students venture around Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area to explore the U.S. Capitol, U.S. Supreme Court, National Archives, National American History Museum, National Marine Corps Museum, Newseum and George Washington’s Mount Vernon (we couldn’t quite find the time to squeeze in any more museums). At these significant American landmarks, students see firsthand where some of the biggest decisions in U.S. history were made and encounter the founding documents of this country. Additionally, students get to unearth more about our nation’s past, both politically and culturally.
Student also have the privilege of honoring the fallen, but not forgotten, U.S. servicemen and women while visiting several memorials including WWII, Iwo Jima, Korean War, and Vietnam. They also have the unique experience of participating in a wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetary. These moments are special to many Y.E.S. students, particularly those with family members who have served. The times of remembrance during Y.E.S. week help students understand the meaning of sacrificing for our country and the importance of becoming leaders for the next generation.
Competition is steep in this pool of bright high school students. Summiteers are assigned to groups with a topic prior to their visit to the nation’s capital where they prepare their arguments for a group debate during the week of Y.E.S. Students also debate on current events to open their eyes to different viewpoints on impactful topics and creates the opportunity to share ideas with one another.
Oh, and did we forget to mention that there is also scholarship opportunities for grabs? Students who excel in the week’s activities by demonstrating strong leadership, public speaking and debate skills will be awarded up to $15,000 in college scholarships at the summit’s closing ceremony.
So “Y.E.S.”, we are ready to meet this group of future leaders and see how they Lead the Legacy!
For more information about the NRA Youth Education Summit, click here.