All high school students deserve a fair opportunity to prepare adequately for their future. The
UNCF studies have shown that students of color have a 50% chance of completing science and math courses that prepare high school seniors for college. The overwhelming percentage of graduating seniors of color who are not ready for post-secondary education or the workforce shows that America’s K-12 education system is not preparing our children for a prosperous future.
Programs like the Urban League of Middle Tennessee’s (ULMT) Young Leaders Academy seek to
level the playing field for students of color to earn college degrees. The Young Leaders Academy,
formerly known as the Summer Leadership Academy, is a 2-week intensive program for academically high-achieving high school students. A blended academic curriculum of hands-on and book training engages youth in dynamic workshops, real-world projects, and career exploration, allowing for self-discovery of personal passions.
The Young Leaders Academy is composed of five sections: 1) Who Am I, 2) Critical
Thinking/Quotes/Current Events, 3) Etiquette/Basic Manners/Public Speaking, 4) Test Taking
Skills/ACT Prep/College, and 5) a 2-week internship. The “Who Am I” part of the academy is an
opportunity for students to reflect and build self-awareness as they embark on a life-changing college journey or pursue a trade. During this time, students can independently envision their whole character and role. Second, critical thinking in the current events sector of the academy allows aspiring college students to explore how to navigate complex real-life citations.
After learning more about self and providing tools, the academy aims to expose the students to
opportunities for skill growth through practicing etiquette, manners, and public speaking. Finally, the last two sections of the Young Leaders Academy provide students with immediate next steps for college test prep and job skills by taking practice tests and participating in a two-week internship with a ULMTpartner.
When your child participates in the ULMT program, they will have an increased opportunity to
pursue a future with a profitable career. For additional information, please call the Urban League of Middle Tennessee 615-254-0525.
The Young Leader Academy Curriculum Outline
I. Who Am I
a. Identify the type of student I am and, how I learn best, how I perform academically
b. Future path-college or trade
c. State contributions to family as well as the community
d. Arts that mirror my character
II. Critical Thinking/Quotes/Current Events
a. i.e. “People who try to put you down, know that you are above them”
b. How does Nashville’s mayor support current issues?
III. Etiquette/Basic Manners/Public Speaking
a. Make eye contact in conversations
b. Using please & thank you
c. Consider your audience
d. Code-switching with dialogue
IV. Test Taking Skills/ACT Prep/College
a. Good note-taking
b. Listening and coming to class or meetings prepared
c. What is the question asking?
d. High school grades = money for college
e. What path would I like to pursue?
V. Each student will work up to 12 hours a week internship with a ULMT corporate partner for a
maximum of 24 hours for the two weeks, and each student will be paid $12.00 an hour for time