Updated: 12/04/2013 10:49 PM
Created: 12/04/2013 6:58 PM KSTP.com
By: Dan Conradt
(ABC 6 News) -- They don't even have drivers licenses yet, but one day soon they're going to steer us into the future.
And a workshop in Austin this week is helping them sharpen the skills they need to take us there.
"They were chosen by their teachers as potential leaders or students who exhibit some leadership skills," said assistant Austin High School principal Stacy Schultz.
26 Austin High School freshmen could be 26 of tomorrow’s leaders.
"To build those and give them an opportunity to become even better leaders in their class and in our school community," assistant principal Stacy Schultz said.
The 26 freshmen and the workshop facilitators gathered Wednesday in the fellowship hall of an Austin church.
"Some of it is individual work on themselves and building their own individual self-esteem. There are also going to be some small group interactions and some large group interactions,” Stacy Schultz told us.
“We've been talking quite a bit about respect, and if you have respect and give respect you're going to get it back," AHS freshman Garett Ruroden explained. “It's cool because he's bringing us out of our comfort zone and we're playing some fun games that really challenge you.”
“They will be working hard to develop as a team of kids that will support each other," Stacy Schultz added.
In this case, they WERE supporting each other … literally. Each student wrote a personal goal on a card, then placed it just out of reach ... and was challenged to reach it. And it didn't take long to discover that their goals were reachable ... with some help: with their classmates supporting their legs and holding their hands, the kids were able to lean over far enough to pluck their goal-card from the floor.
"They will also be stronger within themselves and find some new skills that maybe they didn't know they had," Stacy Schultz told us.
“I think the role of a leader is kind of guiding people in the right direction," freshman Garett Ruroden told us during a break from the seminar.
“In some of the other training I've experienced students have taken these skills and you see it in their family and you can see it in the community they're part of,” Stacy Schultz said. “We're hoping that happens here, and I think that that will."