Some 350 rising high school seniors from across the state soon will gather at Mississippi State to learn about state and local government and the electoral process.
Earlier this year, the university was selected as the 2013-15 host campus for Mississippi's American Legion Boys State, the nation's premier program for teaching how government works, developing leadership skills and nurturing an appreciation for the rights and responsibilities of citizenship.
Registration has been extended to May 22 for the May 26-June 1 program that provides more than $100,000 in scholarships from the American Legion, MSU and other universities.
The registration packet and detailed information on the 2013 session are available at www.msboysstate.com.
Participants will hear from a diverse group of political and government leaders in historic Lee Hall's Bettersworth Auditorium. The speaker schedule includes:
Sunday, May 26
--Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman, 7 p.m.
Monday, May 27
--U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper, 6 p.m.
Tuesday, May 28
--State Rep. George Flaggs (Vicksburg), 10:30 a.m.
--Commissioner of Agriculture Cindy Hyde-Smith, 6 p.m.
Wednesday, May 29
--Treasurer Lynn Fitch, 8 a.m.
--Gov. Phil Bryant, 11 a.m.
--U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, 6 p.m.
Thursday, May 30
--U.S. Rep. Alan Nunnelee, 9 a.m.
--Attorney General Jim Hood, 6 p.m.
Friday, May 31
--Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, 10 a.m.
--State Rep. Toby Barker (Hattiesburg), 6 p.m.
Saturday, June 1
--Lt. John Poulos of the Mississippi Highway Patrol, 8 p.m.
In addition to government and electoral issues, participants will have opportunities to compete in sports and a talent show.
State director Neal Boone said Boys State officials believe the partnership with MSU will help take the program to a higher level. Boys State has a history of training excellence dating back to 1939, he said.
"Boys State reaches our next generation of leaders," Boone said.
In welcoming high school students from around the state, MSU President Mark E. Keenum said having the week-long program is a tremendous honor for the institution. Since the announcement first was made in January, MSU staff members have been making preparations to ensure participants have the best possible experience, he added.
For more information about Mississippi State University, see www.msstate.edu.