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Today’s youth really are our future

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According to UNICEF, “the world is now home to the largest cohort of adolescents in history — 1.2 billion people between the ages of 10 and 19.” Their overall well-being can be affected by the people he or she interacts with like family and community. Today’s youth are faced with ever-changing issues.  

The teenage years should be a time when we as adults are guiding them on the path toward reaching their potential. We have to be intentional in providing support, experiences and opportunities that foster positive results for that age group. A key factor that must be included in the equation is the capacity to be successful. 

In 1991, the National Black MBA Association (NBMBAA) launched the Leaders of Tomorrow (LOT) Program to support and prepare talented youth who desire leadership roles in professional fields. To date, the program has mentored over 8,000 youth nationwide. The program’s activities focus on five pillars — leadership, financial literacy, college preparation, career preparation and life Skills.  

The Indianapolis Chapter has an active LOT Chapter. Registration for the Fall 2020 session is currently open! The Indianapolis Chapter Leaders of Tomorrow Program offers mentors and resources to minority high school students to improve students’ academic and leadership skills, and increase their ability to enter and excel once in college. Through workshops and seminars, students can develop advanced skills and understanding in many areas including college preparation, professional and career development, leadership and management, networking, community engagement, public speaking, analytical and critical thinking, and habits and goal setting. Students are also provided scholarship opportunities. 

In light of the impact of COVID-19, sessions will be virtual via Zoom. Prior to the COVID-19 health pandemic, in-person sessions were held in the state-of-the-art Butler University Lacy School of Business. We are enthusiastic about our partnership with the Butler University Lacy School of Business. All high school students are welcome to register. To register your student, please click on this link

Regions Bank will serve as the Indianapolis Chapter Leaders of Tomorrow Program’s financial literacy partner for the 2020-2021 academic year. Regions will be incorporating several programs aimed at high school students into the LOT financial literacy sessions.   

Some of the previous topics covered and activities include:  

  • Leadership/Entrepreneurship  
  • Resume writing/Interviewing skills presented by a human resources professional  
  • Case competition information/Financial literacy  
  • Critical thinking/Debate  
  • College tours — IUPUI, Purdue University and Butler University  
  • Community service 
  • Creation of a five-year plan and presentation 
  • A day in the life of a college student presentations by current college students 
  • The Impact of social media on teens presented by the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office 

Students also have the opportunity to participate in national activities from the Leadership Summit to the Tech Tour to the National Case Competition. The Leadership Summit is a four-day youth leadership training conference hosted by the NBMBAA’s National Headquarters. The Summit includes guest speakers, a business case competition, breakout sessions, college and career tours and fun social activities.  

Another highlight of the program is the National Business Case Competition. The Business Case Competition Program is a competitive business skills after-school program for high school students. Students learn how to study and address business challenges in team-driven learning environments. They are taught fundamental skills, critical thinking, problem solving and communication in an intensive training series. In addition to these fundamental skills, students develop competencies in core business areas such as finance, marketing, product development and sales. The culmination of the competition is students from across the United States and Canada present their business case to a panel of judges and compete for up to $30,000 scholarship funds. 

The Indianapolis Chapter in partnership with the event’s principal sponsor — Eli Lilly & Co. presents the annual Diversity Golf Classic to support the LOT program. The proceeds from the event are donated to the LOT scholarship fund and the Douglass Juniors youth golf program. Because of the COVID-19 health pandemic this year, the event was postponed until 2021.

The next virtual session is 9 a.m. Oct. 24. If you have questions about the program, please send an email to information@nbmbaa-indy.org. To register your student, please visit the following link.  

Until next month.

Starla A. Trigg is the president of the National Black MBA Association, Indianapolis Chapter.

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