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Making Moves

American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Missouri Girls State begins its 2022 session on the Lindenwood University campus in St. Charles, MO. This is a major change as previous sessions have been in Warrensburg, MO. Another big move for the program is the simultaneous running of Missouri Boys State on the same campus. Both programs are excited for the opportunity to work cooperatively with each other as well as Lindenwood to create another fantastic year for the 2022 session.

In January, ALA Missouri Girls State and Missouri Boys State shared the following press release announcing their big move:

"ST CHARLES, Mo. (January 10, 2022) – Youth leadership in Missouri has a new home. The American Legion Boys State of Missouri and the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Missouri Girls State today announced two firsts: the organizations will host their 2022 sessions at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri, for the first time, and the programs’ 2022 sessions will occur during the same week.

The American Legion Boys State of Missouri board of directors and the American Legion Auxiliary Missouri Girls State committee approved the decision to host their respective leadership programs on Lindenwood University’s campus in St. Charles as part of a multi-year agreement with the university.

In 2022, the two programs will occur simultaneously on Lindenwood University’s campus June 11 to 18. The programs will continue to maintain independent schedules and curriculum but plan to share common resources. Both Missouri Boys State and Missouri Girls State will also be able to enhance their programming by leveraging nationally known speakers and guests. This will allow the programs to join forces for select educational activities and assemblies so that participants are afforded an equal opportunity and an elevated experience during the week.

“We are very excited to be partnering with Lindenwood University and joining with ALA Missouri Girls State in making this change. This historic move will allow both programs to grow and prosper for years to come,” said Brad Lear, director, Missouri Boys State.

“Our leadership committee wholeheartedly supported the decision to move the ALA Missouri Girls State program to Lindenwood University. We look forward to utilizing Lindenwood’s state of the art facilities and leveraging this collaboration with Missouri Boys State to further strengthen the program’s content and continue the strong tradition of providing youth civics education and leadership training to the next generation of Missouri’s leaders,” added Macae Mickens, director, ALA Missouri Girls State.

The two programs collaborated in evaluating universities across the state of Missouri, and the board of directors from each program approved the move. Lindenwood’s location, classroom facilities and housing options were cited as major factors in the decision by both programs.

Lindenwood University, with a current enrollment of more than 7,000 students was founded in 1827 and offers 100+ undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Students at Lindenwood University have the opportunity to participate in more than 70 student clubs and organizations, and the University’s athletic teams compete at the Division II level.

“Lindenwood University is eager to welcome these excellent youth leadership programs to our historic campus here in St. Charles, and we hope to make Lindenwood their long-term home. Our Destination Lindenwood initiative perfectly aligns with the mission of these programs and we are so pleased to host both programs this summer,” said Dr. John Porter, president, Lindenwood University.

Since its inception in 1938, The American Legion Boys State of Missouri has provided high school students a practical laboratory in citizenship and leadership training. Missouri Boys State completed its 81st session in 2021.

ALA Missouri Girls State formed in 1940 as one of the first 11 ALA Girls State programs in the nation. The program has since served Missouri high-school students with a hands-on approach to governmental policy while offering leadership and scholarship opportunities to its participants. ALA Missouri Girls State held its 79th session in 2021.

Both programs operate as non-partisan “learn-by-doing” leadership programs, emphasizing the importance of citizens’ rights and responsibilities and public service in a democratic form of government through real world simulations. Participants run for political offices; create city, county, and state governments; form businesses; and learn life-changing lessons from an all-volunteer staff of top political, legal, military, education and business leaders from throughout the United States.

Missouri Boys State and Missouri Girls State are among a few youth leadership programs to remain no-cost for high-school juniors by utilizing school district, private business, American Legion Post, American Legion Auxiliary Units, and service club donations to pay for the transformative experience both programs provide.

High school juniors wishing to attend Missouri Boys State’s 2022 session may apply here. Missouri Boys State is also seeking sponsorships. If you would like to send a citizen to Boys State, click here.

High school juniors wishing to attend ALA Missouri Girls State’s 2022 session may apply here. ALA Missouri Girls State is currently seeking sponsorships as well. If you would like to help sponsor a student’s attendance at ALA Missouri Girls State, click here.

Journalists with questions can reach ALA Missouri Girls State Director Macae Mickens at or American Legion Boys State of Missouri Director Brad Lear at"

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