Our future leaders are among us now

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 19, 2002

James &uot;Trent&uot; Friday hit the scholarship jackpot this week when it was announced he would receive a Samsung American Legion National Scholarship.

This means Friday will get $20,000 to go toward his college education. Friday was one of seven students in the nation named as a recipient of the scholarship. It was said the Morgan Academy student was shocked to hear he had earned the scholarship.

We are not shocked to learn of his success because we believe our youth are a big asset.

Friday is another good example of our area youth succeeding. There are plenty of students just like Friday in our town making a difference.

Often we ask who will be our new leaders and who will replace our graying leaders in Selma and Dallas County. The answer is people like Friday. Future leaders are growing up among us right now &045;&045; we just can’t always see them.

When we look at younger generations we often see what is wrong and not what is right. We see funny clothes, funny haircuts, and hear loud and annoying music.

What we don’t always see is the way we once were.

Our current leaders were not all grown-up as teens. Instead, they were shaped and molded to become what they are today. What our current leaders need to do is make sure people like Friday see good role models. The ability and raw materials are there. It just needs to be nurtured.

Another key is getting talented young people to stay home or return home. We have to give them a reason to stay here and we have to be an appealing choice. It is natural for children to grow up and see what else is in the world. It is also natural for them to return home as adults who realize some of the best things in the world are at home.

We congratulate James Friday on his success. We also congratulate his family and salute the academic programs at Morgan Academy.