Daniel O’Brien, a student at Waynesville High School, just returned from taking part in a unique career development program in our nation’s capital.

The six-day program – the National Youth Leadership Forum on National Security:  Exploring American Diplomacy, Intelligence and Defense – introduced students to the challenging careers in national security, intelligence, the diplomatic corps and more.

“Imagine being 16 or 17 years old and the responsibility of securing the United States at home and abroad rests on your shoulders. Through specialized simulations, the National Youth Leadership Forum on National Security strives to put students in the driver’s seat of building a strategy that will uphold our national security,” said Dr. Marguerite Regan, dean of academic affairs for NYLF. “The combination of interacting with professionals and with other students in this setting ensures that leaders are being developed so the future of our country will remain very bright.” 

The NYLF’s curriculum is based on actual world events. Throughout the Sept. 25-30 program, students used critical thinking, leadership and public speaking skills to tackle the complex issues involved in national decision-making. Students also participated in thought-provoking question and answer sessions with policy makers and military personnel.