June 9, 2017 — Two delegates from the 2017 session of the American Legion Boys State of Kansas Leadership Academy have been elected by their peers to represent Boys State of Kansas as senators at Boys Nation.
Ryan Harra, a resident of Olathe, Kan., and a senior-to-be at Olathe North High School, and Carson Krakar, also of Olathe, and a senior-to-be at Olathe Northwest High School, will attend Boys Nation, Friday, July 21 through Friday, July 28, at Marymount University in Arlington, Va. The announcement was made this afternoon during the ALBSKLA’s closing ceremonies at Kansas State University in Manhattan.
Erik Brown, Newton, Kan., Newton High School, and Isaiah Eaton, Andover, Andover High School, were selected as first alternate and second alternate, respectively.
At Boys Nation, Harra and Krakar will join representatives from each of the 49 Boys States across the country (Hawaii does not have a Boys State program) to receive an education on the structure and function of federal government. At the event, each delegate acts as a senator from his Boys State. The young lawmakers caucus at the beginning of the session, then organize into committees and conduct hearings on bills submitted by program delegates. Senators learn the proper method of handling bills, according to U.S. Senate rules. Participation in the political process is emphasized throughout the week, including organization of party conventions, and nominating and electing a president and vice president.
The week of government training also includes lectures, forums and visits to federal agencies, national shrines, institutions, memorials and historical sites. On Capitol Hill, Boys Nation senators meet with elected officials from their home states.
Approximately 440 young men from across the State of Kansas, all of whom will enter their senior year of high school this fall, participated in the 2017 session of the American Legion Boys State of Kansas Leadership Academy. The event, in its 80th year, started June 4 and concluded today (June 9).
The ALBSKLA provides a relevant, interactive, problem-solving experience in leadership and teamwork that develops self-identity, promotes mutual respect and instills civic responsibility. Boys State is a “learning by doing” political exercise that simulates elections, political parties and government at the state, county and local levels, providing opportunities to lead under pressure, showcasing character and working effectively within a team. It’s also an opportunity to gain pride and respect for government and the price paid by members of the military to preserve democracy.