BUCKHANNON — Students and faculty gathered in the Buckhannon-Upshur High School auditorium on Tuesday, April 27 to take part in the Future Leaders Program establishment ceremony.
Master Sergeant Dean L. Bowers began the ceremony by explaining the responsibilities that FLP Instructor First Sergeant (Retired) Jim Gregory was about to accept on behalf of B-UHS. A guidon, the organization’s flag, was presented to the group to symbolize the cementing of responsibilities and authority to the FLP class and instructor. This ceremony was the first for the Future Leaders Program at B-UHS and being such, members of the Board of Education were in attendance.
After presenting the guidon to Gregory, Sergeant Major (Retired) Deborah M. Patterson, Program Manager out of Charleston, WV, took the podium to explain more about the foundation of the program. “For several years, General Hoyer and CSM Cantrell, the former leaders of the West Virginia Army National Guard, contemplated over the idea of what they could do to continue to enhance success for the youth in our high schools,” said Patterson. “After much deliberation, they came up with the idea for a program that could really put emphasis on how to make our young men and women more successful in life, and that’s how the Future Leaders Program was initiated.”
Patterson continued to discuss the meaning behind the guidon that was presented to Sgt. Gregory. “In the military, we also have flags that we call guidons to represent a unit or organization. Although the Future Leaders Program is not a military program, we do have a military foundation and we cover military science along with our other tenants of leadership. She concluded with an inspiring quote, “Do today what others won’t, so you can do tomorrow what others can’t.”
Any student interested in joining the B-UHS Future Leaders Program should contact First Sergeant (Retired) Jim Gregory or any member of the school’s administration.