Fairfax County Youth Leadership Program Prepares Future Leaders


Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs
12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 551
Fairfax, VA 22035-0065
703-324-3187, TTY 703-324-2935, FAX 703-324-2010

Jan. 28, 2004

Fairfax County Youth Leadership Program Prepares Future Leaders

An innovative program, launched by Fairfax County, is preparing the next generation of citizens to become engaged citizens and leaders in the community. The Youth Leadership Program, now beginning its fourth year, takes high school juniors from the classroom into county offices and work sites to experience first-hand the work of their local government, the one that is "closest to the people" and the first responder in times of crises.

A total of 36 students are participating in the 2004 class of the Youth Leadership Program, one to two students from each of Fairfax County's high schools. Each month the students attend three-hour sessions sponsored by different county agencies. Through these sessions and an internship in July, students will gain first-hand experience in local government and the services provided to county residents, as well as learn about the challenges faced in meeting the county's growing needs. They also meet with decision makers in government and learn about the role of the public in shaping policy and establishing priorities to meet community needs. The issues the students explore during the year-long program include homelessness, education, human services challenges and solutions, budgeting during an uncertain economy, meeting the recreational and cultural needs of citizens, public safety in today’s world, and land use planning and development.

The students were selected based on their individual achievement in school and their involvement at their school and in the community. The class of 2004 includes the following students: Laela Shallal, Annandale High School; Rohit Manaktala, Centreville High School; Kevin O’Malley and David Lewis, Chantilly High School; Jungin Ahn and Tien Truong, Edison High School; Samantha Grill and Priya Dandawate, Fairfax High School; Luis Contreras and Justine Collado, Falls Church High School; Kelly McGraw and Laura Spurlock, Hayfield Secondary School; Stephanie Sourdillat, Herndon High School; Helen Chen, Lake Braddock Secondary School; Kirrin Hough and John Pappas, Langley High School; Luana Jang, Madison High School; Cynthia Wu, Marshall High School; Salar Mohandesi, McLean High School; Al Sherkia and Phillip Deneault, Mount Vernon High School; Amanda Goodman and Deborah Perl, Oakton High School; Sophia Aziz and Rebecca Jugo, Robert E. Lee High School; Hae-Jung Cho, Robinson Secondary School; Zeh Hale and Kenneth Anderson, South Lakes High School; Sarah Khasawinah and Jenna Cook, J.E.B. Stuart High School; Taurin Barrera, West Potomac High School; Janice Wong and Elizabeth Cole, West Springfield High School, Frank Hagan-Brown and Edward Blunt, Westfield High School; and Lauren Spratt, Woodson High School.

For further information on the Fairfax County Youth Leadership Program, contact Susan Datta in the Fairfax County Department of Management and Budget at 703-324-4068, TTY 711.

FAIRFAX COUNTY IS COMMITTED TO A POLICY OF NONDISCRIMINATION IN ALL COUNTY PROGRAMS, SERVICES AND ACTIVITIES AND WILL PROVIDE REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS UPON REQUEST. TO REQUEST SPECIAL ACCOMMODATIONS, CALL 703-324-3187, TTY 703-324-2935. PLEASE ALLOW FIVE WORKING DAYS IN ADVANCE OF EVENTS IN ORDER TO MAKE THE NECESSARY ARRANGEMENTS.

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