Minnesota American Legion Boys State is a week-long experience of learning about Minnesota government at the local, county and state levels by "doing". It is a week of intensive study and involvement. The participants will actually organize and participate in the various levels and branches of government in addition to participating in athletics, music, writing for the newspaper or holding leadership positions across all levels of the program. Every boy will participate in the process of city, county and state government. Minnesota Boys State is a program for young men who have just completed their junior year of high school. Highlights of the week include political speakers, mock trials, campaigning, elections, and announcement of the Boys State Governor and State Constitutional Officers.
Unlike a summer or recreational camp, Minnesota Boys State is a week of studying and learning by involvement. However, we do have fun times, too. To illustrate this point, included in this mailing is a schedule of a typical day's activities so you may see the type of program that is promoted and the pace expected to the citizens. The citizens also have the opportunity for group living. For many, it will be their first exposure to dormitory living and sharing a room. Meals are served cafeteria style. This is quite different from their home environment. This week will be a good preview of college dorm life. The citizens have both an opportunity and a responsibility. The opportunity is one of participating in a program of government with hundreds of other young men from throughout Minnesota. The responsibility is not only spending the week learning as much as he can, but also taking this knowledge and experience back into his school and his community, using it and sharing it with others. If you have any questions concerning Minnesota American Legion Boys State, please contact State Headquarters or your local American Legion Post.
Our staff is an all volunteer organization comprised of Legionaries, former Boys Staters, teachers, and civic minded citizens from various professions. Combined the staff has decades of experience in instructing the delegates at Boys State and works hard to fulfill the objectives and goals put forth by the American Legion.
Objectives and Goals
A program of this scope encompasses many important objectives. Those which we, The American Legion, feel are most important and for which we strive the hardest are:
- To develop civic leadership and pride in American citizenship. It is our earnest hope that each young man attending a Boys State will return to his community a better citizen and that we will have aroused in him a desire to demonstrate this fact by his willingness to make civic contributions that will help to make his community a better place in which to live.
- To arouse a keen interest in the detailed study of our government. Here we desire to create more than just a passive interest in the actual study of government; we strive to create an interest that will be born of the desire for knowledge.
- To develop an understanding of American traditions and belief in the United States of America. Here we desire to impress upon the young men the glorious traditions which have made this country what it is today.
- To arouse in the young citizens a determination to maintain our form of government. This we attempt to accomplish in many ways but primarily by bringing them into the full realization of how wonderful it is to be an American!
The final two objectives are taken from the Preamble to the Constitution of The American Legion.
"To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation . . . "
"To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy . . ."