Minority high school students get college tips

Thursday, July 21, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 10:53 p.m. CDT, Saturday, July 19, 2008

The Missouri Legislative Black Caucus’ Youth Leadership Conference, which prepares minority high school students from across the state for college, is being held through Saturday at MU.

“This conference gives students the chance to see colleges up close and personal for the first time,” said House Minority Whip Rep. Connie Johnson of St. Louis, who is co-chairwoman of the youth leadership conference.

This year, only 180 students will be allowed to attend, compared to about 300 students in previous years, because of space and cost issues, she said.

The students learn how to do well in college, secure financial aid for school and manage their finances, Johnson said.

The students are divided into 12 groups by career tracks, said Marty Oetting, director of government relations for the University of Missouri System. Oetting is working with the students who want to major in journalism. These students will produce a newsletter about the youth conference.

On Saturday, after the conference, the students will go to a resort at the Lake of the Ozarks to attend the 2005 Missouri Legislative Black Caucus’ Foundation Midwestern Conference, Johnson said. They will attend the career fair there and possibly win a scholarship from the caucus.

The Youth Leadership Conference has been held since 1989, when the Missouri Legislative Black Caucus Foundation started, Oetting said.

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