Academics

Information

  • ALA Girls State is a practical application of Americanism and Good Citizenship.
  • ALA Girls State further teaches a love of God and Country.
  • ALA Girls State trains girls to live together as self-governing Citizens.
  • ALA Girls State informs them about the duties, privileges, rights and responsibilities of American Citizenship.
  • ALA Girls State helps them understand – so that they may participate in the functioning of Government.
  • ALA Girls State shows them the contributions women can and should make in all phases of Government.
  • ALA Girls State helps them grasp the meaning of some of the responsibilities, which they must assume, as they become adults.
  • ALA Girls State helps them realize that they have a responsibility for the future and that it will be up to them to make it better than it is now.
  • ALA  Girls State Citizens by their experiences learn the value of hope; understanding the rights of others, the value of friendship; and loyalty.

History

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ALA marquee Girls State program, first presented in 1937, is one of the most respected and coveted experiential learning programs present in the United States. The program epitomizes the ALA’s mission to honor those who have brought us our freedom through our enduring commitment to develop young women as future leaders grounded in patriotism and Americanism.  The young women become knowledgeable of the democratic process and how our republic form of government works at the state and national levels.

Each summer, approximately 20,000 young women participate in weeklong ALA Girls State programs across the nation.  Every American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program operates with the same patriotic values through a nonpartisan curriculum where students assume the roles of government leaders, campaigning as “Federalists” and “Nationalists” to become mayors and county and state officials of their ALA Girls State.

The program is a weeklong immersive learning experience held on a college campus where girls live in “cities/towns” within the dormitory.  The learning, experience, memories, and friendships last a lifetime.

Freedom’s Foundation at Valley Forge, PA, has long recognized the Auxiliary for the ALA Girls State and ALA Girls Nation program.   It has also received special recognition from the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), which has placed this program on its National Advisory List of Contests and Activities.

In 1945, a dream became a reality.   The members of the Department of Massachusetts, American Legion Auxiliary, made extended and very involved plans to begin an ambitious program called ALA Massachusetts Girls State.

The idea of bringing High School Juniors, from all of the High Schools in the Commonwealth, together for a week – to study government structures, by personal involvement took much planning, dreaming and commitment.   Educators and legislators alike applauded the idea, as the first session met at Bridgewater State Teachers College.   The girls and staff at the initial session were told to bring, not only their linens, but ration books as well, as World War II was winding down and all citizens were subjected to rationing.   Auxiliary staff members, who tried to please the appetites of all 200 girls registered, did the many duties of administration as well as the cooking.

Selection of Citizens

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Girls State is intended for the most outstanding girls, from the standpoint of leadership, character, and scholarship in the high schools. Only those girls who will enthusiastically devote their FULL TIME to increasing their knowledge, while at the same time advancing the whole Girls State Program, should be chosen.

Mass Girls State - Group Photo

Program Objectives

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  • To develop leadership and pride in American citizens.
  • To educate citizens about our system of government.
  • To instill a greater understanding of American traditions.
  • To stimuluate a desire to maintain our democratic government processes.

Activities

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  • Press Conference – Press Reporter needed from each City and Town.
  • Newspaper Published – Reporter and Artists needed from each City and Town.
  • Choir/Band – 5 – 8 citizens needed to sing/play at the Inauguration after completing only 2 to 3 rehearsals.
  • Town/City Scenarios
  • Girls State Revue – Individual Talent performers
  • City/Town Books – a report from each Citizen about her position/s held at ALA Girls State and handed into the City/Town Clerks the last night of ALA Girls State