Youth conference teaches leadership skills to students

About 100 Hampshire and Franklin middle school students participated in the conference

GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The “You Lead” Youth Conference was held at Greenfield Community College Tuesday morning.

The Northwestern District Attorney’s Office holds this event each year to help middle school students strengthen their leadership skills and make healthier choices.

About 100 Hampshire and Franklin middle school students left their school for the day to participate in the conference. Students led discussions on violence prevention, relationship building, and substance abuse prevention.

Laurie Loisel, Director of Community Outreach & Education at the Northwestern District Attorney’s Office, told 22News, “The idea is to reach kids at a young age to bring up the issues and build leadership skills.”

White Brook Middle School 8th Grader Jordan Dunham told 22News, “I enjoy getting my opinions out there, like everybody was focused on drugs and alcohol. All of us just getting together makes me feel very supportive.”

This was the sixth consecutive year the Northwestern DA’s Office has held this youth conference at GCC.

Some of the schools represented Tuesday included Frontier Regional School in Deerfield, Greenfield Middle School and Great Falls Middle School in Montague.