Participants – called citizens — in each program are divided into groups and elect mock municipal officials and representative to a mock state legislature. They also elect state officials who meet to hold elections and pass bills in a manner similar to the actual Louisiana legislature.
The program is intended to teach high-achieving students to be informed citizens while developing a sense of community, service and responsibility.
“We are again honored to host some of the brightest and most promising young people in Louisiana as they experience the principles of government during Louisiana Boys and Girls State,” said Northwestern State President Dr. Randall J. Webb. “This is an excellent opportunity for young men and women to develop leadership, patriotism and a sense of civic responsibility.”
In addition to dozens of Legion and Auxiliary staff, 420 citizens and 52 counselors will participate in this year’s Girls State while 400 citizens and about 80 junior and senior counselors participate in this year’s Boys State.
Louisiana Boys State began in 1940, followed by Louisiana Girls State in 1941. Northwestern State has hosted the event since 2007. Delegates are sponsored by an American Legion Post, local business or community-based organization.
The delegates will utilize several residence halls and university buildings throughout the NSU and Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts campuses. Boys and Girls State staff and counselors will be arriving throughout the week in preparation for the citizens’ arrival and convocation Sunday, June 23.