Coast Guard and Camden County launch leadership program

CAMDEN COUNTY, N.C. – The Coast Guard 5th District commander and Camden County superintendent signed a memorandum of understanding Monday, which launched the Coast Guard Junior Leadership Program at Camden County High School.

By signing the memorandum, Rear Adm. Wayne E. Justice and Ron Melchiorre have established the second Coast Guard Junior Leadership Program in the U.S.

The Coast Guard Junior Leadership Program in place at the Maritime and Science Technology Academy in Key Biscayne, Fla., served as the basis for the development of the program at Camden County, N.C.

“I want to thank the Coast Guard for really supporting this idea,” said keynote speaker Rep. Walter B. Jones. “When it really came down to the bottom line, it was the Coast Guard that said ‘yes.'”

“It’s a major thing to prepare them to be leaders,” said CCHS principal Melvin L. Hawkins. “For their families, their workplace, here at the schoolyard and outside the school, this is an avenue to prepare these young people to become leaders down the road, beyond just being a leader on the athletic field or a club. This gives everyone a little more to reach out for.”

“The opportunity to formalize the idea of a junior leadership program in a fine high school like Camden has been a long time coming,” said Justice. It’s the right thing to do and the right place to do it.”

Editors note: Corrected attribution of quotes

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