UNITED STATES—The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) has established a Youth Leadership Camp (YLC) for high school deaf and hard of hearing kids since 1969. This camp is connected to the Junior NAD association, which is an extension of the NAD. It started with the idea of building leadership among the Junior NAD members. Frank Turk and Gary Olsen, director and project specialist of Junior NAD, began this camp after much discussion and research.
The first camp was held from July 27 to August 23, 1969 in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. The attendance included 64 freshmen and sophomores; success was evident and which allowed the camp to continue year after year. This year will be the camp’s 48th event.
The NAD Youth Leadership Camp is a four-week camp during the summer where the high school students learn about leadership and discover more about themselves. The camp has adopted the Chinese saying, ““Tell me, and I’ll forget. Show me, and I’ll remember. Involve me, and I’ll learn.”
Its the idea of learning by doing. Today, the camp accepts 32 males and 32 females all over the US to come together and learn how to “become successful leaders and advocates for the deaf and hard of hearing community, including businessmen and women, teachers, professors, lawyers, doctors, NAD board members, and employees. NAD YLC is a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity.”
The NAD YLC is a great opportunity for high school students to learn, grow, and find themselves in this hearing world. This year the YLC will be held on July 17 through August 12.