Outreach Center Honors First Graduates

Contact: Brad Duncan

 

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“What I like about this project is that me did it together. We did it with your help. In order to become a top 20 institution, we need to do research that affects the people of Kentucky. We will grow our reputation by working with the people of Kentucky, and I think we are on the right path."

-- Lee T. Todd Jr,,
president,
University of Kentucky

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 28, 2004) -- The University of Kentucky’s Community Outreach Partnership Center (COPC) honored the first graduates of the Citizens Leadership Academy (CLA) during a ceremony on Tuesday, April 27, at the YWCA Phillis Wheatley Center.

“This has been a dedicated group of future community leaders, who are committed to making a difference in their communities,” said Retia Walker, vice president for Academic Outreach and Public Services, who oversees the COPC.

The CLA was developed by the UK COPC in partnership with the Bluegrass-Aspendale Teen Center, the East End Empowerment Program, LexLinc, and the YWCA Phillis Wheatley Center. It is a leadership development project designed to educate, enlighten and empower grassroots community leaders.

“What I like about this project is that me did it together. We did it with your help,” said UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. “In order to become a top 20 institution, we need to do research that affects the people of Kentucky. We will grow our reputation by working with the people of Kentucky, and I think we are on the right path."

Over the course of 11 classes, the students heard speakers discuss a wide array of topics including “Creating Personal Power,” “The Art of Leadership,” “Building Communities Based on Existing Assets,” “Getting to Know Your Community,” “Strategic Planning,” “Grant Writing,” and “How to Influence Public Policy.” Speakers included Jenny Laster, president/CEO, The Grassroots Leadership Academy (Cincinnati, Ohio); Marianne Forsythe, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government Mayor’s Training Center; David Cozart, LexLinc; and Delaine Green, executive director, Coalition of North East Associations Inc. (Rochester, N.Y.).

Graduating students also prepared proposals for community projects, and the CLA awarded grants to support some of the projects. Those receiving grants and there project titles were: Sonya Combs, “No Limit to Success: A Youth Explosion”; Andrea James, Sharon Searcy, Melba Smith and Bridgette Tally, “Ready for Success”; Cynthia Bryant, “Project COPC: A Community Initiative”; LeRon Carter, Mikia Jackson, Marcus Jones and Patrice Webb, “What’s Love Got to Do With It?”; and Ronnie Brown, Carolyn Doty, Bettye Simpson, Sheila Taylor and Gwendolyn Woolfolk, “Seniors’ Day Out.”

“I see confidence, pride and self-esteem today,” Lexington Mayor Teresa Isaac. “You have learned what it takes to be a civic leader.”

The 2004 CLA graduates were Ronnie L. Brown, Cynthia Bryant, LeRon O. Carter, Sonya Combs, Carolyn Doty, Duval Headley, Alex Hicks, Mikia Jackson, Andrea James, Marcus Jones, Christa Lee, Sharon Searcy, Bettye W. Simpson, Melba Smith, Sheila Taylor, Bridgette Talley, Patrice Webb, and Gwendolyn Woolfolk.

For more information on UK COPC, visit the Web site.


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