There’s no better way to develop leadership skills than to practice, practice, practice. That is exactly what two students from Houston High School did while attending the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Leadership in Practice program.

Sophomores Sydney Cremer and Austin Keeney joined more than 120 high school students who were selected as future leaders from schools across the state.

Cremer and Keeney were sponsored by Judge Doug Gaston and Tuttle Utility Gas Inc.

Held July 6-8 on the Missouri Military Academy campus in Mexico, Mo., Leadership in Practice is designed to provide young Missourians with the opportunity to learn what it takes to be an effective leader in their schools and communities.

All participants were students between their freshman and sophomore years in high school. With help from Missouri business leaders and educators, the students learned firsthand about how to successfully work together as a team and individually as a leader.

Jeff Frazier, president of Cellular Today in Mexico, Mo., spoke to the group about entrepreneurship and what it takes to run your own business. The students were then challenged to use these leadership skills in activities that simulated real-life situations. Working in small groups, the students developed business plans for a new product or service. Participants also were encouraged to set goals for themselves for their development as leaders.

Leadership in Practice is part of a youth leadership educational program that was created by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce in 1962. It is funded through scholarships provided by state businesses and civic organizations.

The Missouri Chamber of Commerce was founded in 1923 and is the largest business organization in Missouri, representing almost 3,000 employers providing more than 425,000 jobs for Missourians.



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