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Youth Leadership Upson

The mission of Youth Leadership Upson is to expose selected high school students exhibiting leadership traits to the business, political, and civic working of our community. The group is made up of Seniors, Juniors, and Sophomores that are residents of Upson County and who have demonstrated outstanding leadership skills in their school, church, and community. Each student is selected for a one-year school term and to successfully complete the program, a student must attend each scheduled class.

Youth Leadership Applications have closed for 2023. They will reopen in August 2024. 


Any student that is a resident of Upson County and is a member of the Sophomore, Junior or Senior class can participate in the Youth Leadership Upson Program. We encourage participation from all three classes.
A Home-Schooled or Private Schooled student may apply, but they must live in Upson County and be an Upson EMC Customer.
Applicants must complete an application, plus have the recommendations of two adults. Please send in the original Youth Leadership Application. The application must be hand-written by the applicant.
When the judges are considering a student to recommend, they look for those who have:
-Demonstrated leadership qualities through their actions with service to school, church, civic or youth activities
-Involvement in sports, after-school activities, clubs, or organizations
-Shown initiative, enthusiasm
-Integrity of character
-Interest in people
-Potential for contributing to the program
-Strong recommendations explaining the leadership behavior in student

The purpose of Youth Leadership Upson shall be to identify emerging leaders among the youth of our community, and to provide for them an organized training program in the skills necessary to act in leadership capacities, to address issues of concern to them in their personal, academic, extracurricular and community involvement.

Participants can expect to be trained by leadership development professionals, be involved in group discussions, participate in presentations, benefit from guest speakers and become actively involved in session topics. Participants will gain insight and knowledge of the Thomaston-Upson community.

Participants in Youth Leadership Upson are selected after consideration of their recognized and potential leadership and the merit of their application and recommendations. Interviews are only necessary if the margin between two students is too narrow. At the conclusion of Youth Leadership Upson, participants will have developed a network of in-depth relationships with students from throughout the community and will have gained a deeper insight and broader knowledge of leadership skills and community issues.

Attendance at all programs is required. If an emergency arises, a written explanation must be submitted to the Youth Leadership Upson Committee. The committee will then determine if the absence is excused or not. If more than one program is missed, the student will not graduate from the program.

Upson EMC and the Thomaston-Upson Chamber of Commerce HAVE A PARTNERSHIP THAT ENHANCES the Youth Leadership Upson Program, with the Hubert Hancock Leadership Award - Washington Youth Tour, the prize for the “most outstanding” of the group. The award, named locally to honor Hubert Hancock, longtime Upson EMC director and Chamber supporter, will give a selected student the opportunity to join others from Georgia for a two-day Georgia Tour, then venture on with students from across the nation on an incredible week in Washington, D.C. known as the Washington Youth Tour. The tour is a fast-paced once in a lifetime opportunity to see how America works. The student is selected by his/her peers, as well as attendance with every program, participation to the fullest degree and submission of all applications, references, and permission slips on time and accurately. Then, out of town judges conduct the interviews of the six finalists.