Boys State & Girls State

Summer Burkhammer, Jenna Barnhart and Jaden Hatcher pose for a picture during the last assembly of Girls State.

American Legion Auxiliary Rhododendron Girls State took place on June 9-14 at Davis and Elkins College. American Legion Mountaineer Boys State took place on June 9-15 at Jackson’s Mill. Two to three students are selected from each county to attend. Girls and Boys State consists of learning one of the most important freedoms: democracy. Girls and Boys State had many activities you could participate in such as, sports, parades, talent shows and a newspaper course called Rhododendron Daily. For 100 years the Amercian Legion has devoted some of their profits in supporting an event such as this to support the youth and the learning of our city,county and state government works.
I asked two attendees from our school about their time at Girls and Boys State, Peyton Oliver and Jenna Barnhart.
What was your favorite part about Girls/Boys State?
Jenna Barnhart: “Spending time with my community and writing for Rhododendron Daily”
Peyton Oliver: “Playing sports with my community, and everyone else.”
What did you learn while at Girls/Boys State?
Jenna Barnahrt: “ I learned how to make friends, leadership skills and about the government.”
Peyton Oliver: “I Learned what all the flags for West Virginia meant, how to fold a flag and we learned how our government worked.”
Jenna Barnhart was apart of the Rhododendron Daily while at Girls State. The Rodendodren Daily gave girls the opportunity to interview government officials, and public speakers on topics they presented to them.
What did the Rhododendron Daily consist of?
Jenna Barnhart: “ I had a partner named Peyton, and we were assigned a story on a man named Adam. He spoke about motivational speaking and feminism. We interviewed him afterwards and then wrote a story that included pieces of advice from him.”

Girls and Boys State is held every year. To be an attendee students will need to be a junior going into their senior year, a good standing student, and have an interest in our government. Students can apply with their school counselors. Applications should be completed no later than the Spring. Two to three students will get accepted but many can apply. This is an opportunity to learn about the government, run for office, and make new friends.