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Youth Leadership Rutherford

Youth Leadership Rutherford



The Youth Leadership program began as a project of the 1993-94 Leadership Rutherford Education Study Group. It was approved as a sponsored program of Leadership Rutherford in June 1994, and the first class began in the fall of 1995.

The program serves as a personal development program designed to educate and enhance the quality of leadership skills in high school seniors while promoting community awareness.

Program Information and Content

Youth Leadership Rutherford is directed by Leadership Rutherford and Rutherford Works.

Youth Leadership Rutherford consists of an orientation program in September, seven program days from October through April and graduation in April. Each program day focuses on a major area of community concern and explores issues of leadership within the context of that subject. The goal of each day is to open the minds of participants to the viewpoints that surround each issue and enable young people to become more visionary leaders.

Program Objectives

  • To enhance leadership skills and increase community awareness in high school students
  • To provide students with a practical understanding of major challenges and opportunities facing Rutherford County
  • To enhance the educational experience of future leaders in Rutherford County

Program Topics

  • Are You Ready for What's Next After High School?
  • Civic Engagement - Exercising Your Constitutional Right
  • Community Engagement & Volunteerism
  • Entrepreneurship & Innovation
  • Getting to Know Rutherford County
  • Personal Branding & Financial Success
  • Your Role as a Leader in Rutherford County Today and Tomorrow​


Application Procedures and Tuition

Youth Leadership Rutherford actively recruits rising seniors from all high schools within Rutherford County. A maximum of 32 students have the opportunity to participate each year. Participants are selected on their own merits through an application and interview process conducted by the Leadership Rutherford Council.

  • Criteria for selection include:
    • Incoming High school senior
    • GPA of 2.75 or higher
    • Demonstrated interest in leadership positions in school and/or community
    • Desire for personal growth opportunities
    • Commitment to completion of entire program

    The Youth Leadership Rutherford program tuition is $215.00 per student. Tuition covers all costs of the program—meals, transportation, materials, etc.

    Applications are available each January for the following year and may be obtained through high school guidance offices or by calling the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce at (615) 893-6565. Completed applications are due in February, personal interviews are scheduled in early March and students are notified by mail of their acceptance into the program.