Students discuss constitutionalism at Young Leaders Academy

(June 24, 2021) By GlyptusAnn Grider Jones
Students discuss constitutionalism at Young Leaders Academy

2021 YLA participants with Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams

Twenty-four outstanding Kentucky high school students attended the McConnell Center’s Young Leaders Academy last week.

And while many of their peers were taking a much-deserved summer break, these students furthered their leadership skills and understanding of U.S. history during a four-day conference on "Revisiting American Constitutionalism."

“YLA provided participants the opportunity to engage with local leaders and top constitutional scholars, as well as to forge friendships with peers across the state,” said Natalie Smith, YLA Director and McConnell Center Civic Education Coordinator.

YLA topics included the history of America before the Constitution, discussion on written versus unwritten constitutions, Federalist and Anti-Federalist perspectives and challenges related to the constitution today. Students participated in faculty-led presentations, small-group discussions and debates, with social activities around campus and the city.

YLA was held June 16 through 19 at the University of Louisville’s Belknap Campus. 

Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams and Russell Coleman, former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky, were among the guest speakers.

The 2021 YLA participants and their high schools are as follows:

  • Madison Adams, Barren County High School
  • Rheana Britt, Barren County High School
  • Clint Chambliss, Elizabethtown High School
  • Hunter Fackler, South Oldham High School
  • Katherine Feeback, Great Crossing High School
  • Caden Ray Hamilton, Greenup County High School
  • Jacob Hinton, LaRue County High School
  • Carrie Hudson, West Jessamine High School
  • Nicholas Jindrich, Central Hardin High School
  • Sophia Koppensteiner, Greenwood High School 
  • Olivia Medley, Elizabethtown High School 
  • Hannah McNeil, Assumption High School 
  • William Parocai, Glasgow High School 
  • Ivey Redd, Trigg County High School 
  • Kyle Sanderfer, duPont Manual High School 
  • Jackson Schablik, Holy Cross High School 
  • Taylor Smith, Breckinridge County High School 
  • Luke Taylor, Daviess County High School 
  • Claire Thornhill, Breckinridge County High School 
  • Sarah Umbarger, Marshall County High School
  • Macy Waddle, duPont Manual High School
  • Joseph Wilson, St. Henry District High School
  • Alex Young, St. Xavier High School 
  • Brody Young, Woodford County High School