MASON CITY, Iowa - On a day where most kids get to stay home from school, students at Mason City High School took leadership to organize an event for their peers on this MLK Day.
The high school held a leadership conference, in conjunction with the Iowa Association of Student Councils. About 40 students from three different schools learned from presenters about how to be an effective leader. Organizers planned on six schools attending, but weather made it so only three could.
"It's a good opportunity to meet other kids and to kind of learn things that you wouldn't just in your own room," Sarah Dodd, a senior from Mason City High School, said.
Chad Elsberry, with the Iowa High School Athletic Association, said one of his lessons was about teaching students to step up when they see something that shouldn't be happening.
"I think it's really important for younger students especially to receive that message about bystander intervention and positive bystander intervention," Elsberry said. "They're the ones who really have the power to make a difference in their peer group and within their school."
Organizers said having the conference on MLK Day was very fitting.
"Martin Luther King Jr., I think, would totally agree with what we're doing today," Laura Grommesh, the adviser of the Mason City Student Council said. "Kids coming to school on this day and gaining better skills to create a better world."
Hannah Brown is a junior at Mason City High School and presented at the conference.
"Anybody can really become a leader," Brown said. "You just have to put your mind to it and really work towards a goal and try and make any little differences that you can to make your environment better."
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