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Huskey, Pascal attend Rotary Youth Leadership Awards

Garrett Paschal, at left, and Colby Huskey represented Madison at Rotary Youth Leadership Awards at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. Paschal and Huskey are members of Interact Club at Bob Jones High School. CONTRIBUTED
Garrett Paschal, at left, and Colby Huskey represented Madison at Rotary Youth Leadership Awards at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. Paschal and Huskey are members of Interact Club at Bob Jones High School. CONTRIBUTED

MADISON – Colby Huskey and Garrett Paschal joined teenagers from across North Alabama for the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program.

Colby, a sophomore, and Paschal, a junior, attend Bob Jones High School and participate in Interact Club, Rotary’s age-level affiliate for teenagers.

U.S. Space & Rocket Center hosted the intensive program for leadership training for high school students on Jan. 28-30. Rotary International sponsors RYLA. On a regional basis, Rotary District 6860 and Rotary Clubs of Madison, Downtown Huntsville and Greater Huntsville plan and conduct the sessions.

During the three-day conference, students experienced team building and character-building activities that ended with a group project and presentation. For example, Huskey’s group researched the problem of teen stress and presented their findings with possible solutions to help alleviate some of the triggers for pressure that young adults face.

“Colby shared a room with five other boys who were from Huntsville, Athens, Cullman and Birmingham. There were approximately 125 teens between 15 to 18 years old,” Colby’s mother Cindy Huskey said.

Colby Huskey and Paschal learned about Rotary’s avenues of service that connect with the club itself, vocational skills, community outreach, international service and help to youth.

“They also learned valuable traits that make a great leader: teamwork, compromise, communication, confidence, commitment and a positive attitude,” Cindy Huskey said. “These skills will truly serve them well in future leadership roles.”

The teenagers also heard about Rotary’s 4-Way Test. The four questions determine if a statement or action is true, fair, likely to build good will and beneficial to all.

Individual Rotary Clubs encourage teenagers to apply for RYLA and then select the youth that they want to sponsor. Applicants do not pay any fees. Local Rotarians cover expenses for RYLA scholars.

During RYLA, delegates learned from lectures, discussions with skilled and prominent leaders, group meetings and a condensed version of Space Camp.

For more information, visit Facebook/RYLAHSV.

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