What is the RYLA Experience?
This week we have the pleasure of hearing from several students about their RYLA experience this past summer and they will be joined by a RYLA Alum turned Camp Facilitator, Cory Netland. 
In Cory's words: "RYLA has been a part of my life since 2012 when I was a camper. Every year since, I have volunteered as a Camp Facilitator. I love going back, because I always get to watch students evolve from leaders who are unsure of their untapped potential to leaders who can confidently say they can make a change in the world, and it only happens in one week! If students are willing to fully emerce themselves in the experience, they will leave with tools to make them a better leader and a better person."
What you may or may not know about RYLA:
  • The goal of RYLA is for students to become better leaders, citizens, classmates, and friends.
  • The camp is a weeklong leadership training held on the U of MN Crookston campus each summer
  • About 150 students from all over District 5580 attend.
  • The training is based on Sean Covey’s book ‘ 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens’.
  • The students are given exercises and challenges that are designed to foster critical thinking, co-operation, problem solving, self-awareness, confidence and more.
When asked about the RYLA experience, the students has this to say:
"At RYLA I realized how strong and brave I am. Everyone there helped me realize it. This camp will forever hold a special place in my heart. It taught me so many important life values of respect, honesty, and courageousness. I hope to use these values forever in my life when I forget how special I am, or to remind others how important they are."  ~Grace Semaan
"I learned that when I am in a new or uncomfortable situation I am pretty quiet  but eventually there comes a point where I jump right in and apply myself completely not worried about what others will think. I also learned that I have a tendency to make people laugh to ease any tensions within a group. This experience will be valuable after high school because we learned skills including public speaking, event organization, group work, how to meet new people, and, above all else; public service and community work." ~ Emily Tusken