High school students benefit from leadership conference

Dr. Lewis Brooks addresses high school students at the Shelby County Student Leadership Conference held at Valleydale Church (Reporter Photo/Graham Brooks).

Dr. Lewis Brooks addresses high school students at the Shelby County Student Leadership Conference held at Valleydale Church Sept. 25. (Reporter Photo/Graham Brooks)

By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer

HOOVER – “Your actions speak louder than words,” is a phrase we are all too familiar with. This was one piece of advice given to over 300 high school students throughout Shelby County who attended the Shelby County Student Leadership Conference at Valleydale Church on Sept. 25.

This was the second year for the event, which seeks to equip high school students with the leadership skills to make a positive impact within their school and community.

Billy Boughey, leadership consultant and featured keynote speaker of the event, gave advice to students that they can use once they go off to college and into the real world.

“Speak up, down and sideways with humility,” said Boughey. “Pour everything out into what you love.”

The one-day event sent student representatives from all over Shelby County to hear a variety of speakers including 30 student leaders from universities across Alabama who led the high school students during small group breakout sessions.

Oak Mountain High School graduate and current Auburn University student Caroline Beauchaine was an emcee for the event and discussed how great the event was in preparing the students for the future.

“This is the second annual Student Leadership Conference and there are a few main things we’d like students to takeaway from this event,” said Beauchaine. “We are trying to equip these 9-12 grade students to be leaders and take this back to their schools and make positive changes and also use them throughout the community.”

Beauchaine is currently a junior at Auburn where she is studying public relations and involved in the Student Government Association. Most of the students at the conference are involved in SGA or some other leadership position at their high schools.

Other speakers at the conference included Alabama Governor Dr. Robert Bentley, Dr. Lewis Brooks, Dr. John Stewart and others.