The Michigan Middle School Leadership Initiative is designed to assist middle school students in becoming agents of positive change within their communities through:
>Developing the natural leadership abilities of all participants by providing concrete leadership tools
>Increasing awareness of civic action opportunities for middle school age students
>Creating an active network of middle school age leaders in our state.
To accomplish these outcomes, The American Youth Foundation partners with local middle schools to select teams of 6th-8th graders who have been identified as emerging student leaders. They may not be students who already hold leadership positions, but are those who have been recognized by school staff as positive role models with a desire to make a difference. Each school will also be responsible for selecting one faculty member who will act as an advisor/mentor for the team. The team and advisor attend Camp Miniwanca, near Shelby, MI, where they engage in activities designed to promote leadership skills. When they return to school they plan and create a year-long project that will guide their year’s activities to enrich their school community for the benefit of all.
Our teachers recommend students they believe would enjoy and greatly benefit from the MMLI experience. Typically we are able to send 10 students each year; this group then becomes a leadership organization for our school, meeting frequently to fine-tune and implement their schoolwide project, for their peers' benefit.