The APD Youth Leadership Program travelled to Corpus Christi and stayed on board the USS Lexington
Ret. APD Officer Eric Oakmon, whose diligent fundraising for the APD Youth Leadership Program paid for everyone's trip (Adult Chaperones and camper) to us all to THANK YOU OFFICER OAKMON!
85 middle and high schoolers attended this free summer program and saw it all the way through. Their reward? The satisfaction of having spent a good portion of their summer engaged in discovering and developing the kind of skills and knowledge necessary to become successful leaders, and adults. Moreover, they earned the respect of their parents, peers, and program mentors. Retired officer Eric Oakmon, the APD Office of Community Liaison, and a giving community of private and public organizations, and philanthropic individuals, in a truly collaborative effort, came together to provide a personal development experience: a two month leadership program, designed to empower teens ages 12 to 17 years of age, by helping them develop the personal tools to create an exciting future. Program attendees constructively used their summer break from school to develop leadership skills, but only after taking to heart the fact that in order to be leaders, they must be good stewards of themselves, first Self mastery, first, then leadership, was this summer's constant refrain, and in a dynamic, hands-on learning environment that used a variety of fun and challenging projects, activities, workshops and discussions, program attendees were encouraged to develop self-confidence and self-mastery and to lead by example. Retired APD Officer Eric Oakmon, the originator and a fourteen year veteran of this youth leadership program, in collaboration with Austin Independent School District's, Dobie Middle School, strives each year to pull together summer youth programming for what has been an annual average of up to 120 attendees since the program's inception - Programming that continues to keep Austin's youth out of trouble and heading towards the bright future that is their birth right. Many thanks to officer Oakmon and the Austin Police Department for continuing to provide this strong community program for Austin youth.