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Teenagers shine at Youth & Government Day

Original post made on Mar 3, 2010

When my 14-year-old grandson Jordan Nally asked me to join him on a YMCA trip to Sacramento, I envisioned rafting down the Sacramento River followed by a campfire supper and a sing-along. Was I surprised. This was a statewide Youth & Government program that involved most of the YMCA organizations in California, including 28 high school students and three advisors from the Tri-Valley YMCA. As I walked to the Capitol and hotel meeting rooms, I found myself among 2,500 smartly dressed teenagers on their best behavior, each carrying thick binders with a 46-page "Model Legislature & Court" program schedule. The boys wore suits and ties, and since this was a five-day conference, they had to know how to tie their own ties each morning, which was a first-time challenge for some. The girls were also dressed professionally. For everyone in this freshman to senior age group, the dress code for this convention was far different from the high school campuses they represented.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, February 26, 2010, 12:00 AM

Comments (4)

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Posted by Pat
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Mar 3, 2010 at 1:21 pm

Enjoyed reading this positive story about our young people in town. Keep up the good work.

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Posted by tennesse jed
a resident of Jensen Tract
on Mar 4, 2010 at 6:08 am

No "pants on the ground" or "hats on backwards" in this group! I am renewed!

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Posted by Amador student
a resident of Birdland
on Mar 5, 2010 at 11:36 pm

It should be noted that Y&G is considered a "pay-to-go" extracurricular in the face of college admissions along with other such programs like NYLC, EPGY, and Johns Hopkins CTY. The truly prestigious programs are the ones that are highly selective and once chosen, are of costs that do not discriminate against less financially privileged families.

However, I suppose a program should not be solely judged based on reputation. It sounds like Y&G participants are enthusiastic and enjoy the experience. So ultimately, if they have a good time there, then there is no point arguing this case.

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Posted by Michelle
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Mar 19, 2010 at 7:26 pm

I must respond to the earlier post dated Mar. 5, 2010 suggesting that the YMCA provides an exclusive pay as you go program that discriminates against those who are financially disadvantaged. This is completely false. My daughter does pay to be a part of this truly extraordinary program. What you may not know is that no one is turned away from the program regardless of whether they can pay or not. The money collected for the program costs from those who can afford the "ticket price" helps to supplement the program in the lower economic communities. Some of the largest delegations represented are those from urban schools in disadvantaged neighborhoods. It is a first class program that empowers all students to have a voice and encourages them not allow their social or economic status limit their opportunities or expectations.

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