First of all, a big thank you to you and your local Boys State committees — it is through your efforts that we are able to continue to run one of the most respected educational programs of government instruction for high school seniors-to-be in the state of Connecticut.
We value both your ownership of and involvement in the nomination, selection, and registration process each and every year!
Like all previous years, you are empowered to work with local schools as you see fit to filter and vet qualified candidates you wish to nominate for the program! The lifeline of Connecticut Boys State is you!
We have greatly increased our online marketing and personal outreach to schools themselves through this website so that we can take better advantage of the school’s insight into potential nominees. That was done on purpose, as they have up to 3 years in knowing the young men on a day-to-day basis, and we want to embed in their minds the importance of “pipe-lining” students year after year for participation in the program. Surveys show the best way to do this is both via a top-down approach (e.g., materials on a global website like this one) and a bottom-up, local, relationship-oriented approach (e.g., you working a grassroots campaign in your communities). In summary, it takes constant communication at all levels to consistently attract the finest candidates to the program!
PROCESS & INSTRUCTIONS
Steps for the Legion to take to complete the process
1. Determine the number of students you wish to send. We know that this number can vary each year, so ensure your committee agrees to the goal.
2. Print marketing materials.
If instead you do not have access to a printer for your computer, contact Mary Harris at Admin@ctlegion.org and provide her with your mailing address and the number of copies you need, and she will mail these to you.
3. Contact your local High School’s Lead Guidance counselor and/or Lead principal. Schedule a meeting with them (and/or their designee) in person so you may build the relationship and review the materials together.
4. During this meeting, educate the school’s representative on the target profile of the student we are seeking for Boys State. This can be based upon your own personal experiences and your post’s desires. Note, however, that our standard profile is found HERE.
5. Once you and the school agree on nominees for the program, schedule interviews with them and/or their families at a mutually agreeable time. If you so choose, you may use the paper application form from previous years to help vet the young men
Please note, application should be filled out prior to downloading.
6. Upon completion of the interviews, select and confirm your delegates. Be sure to let the school know your choices and provide any feedback to them so they can adjust their approach in the selection process in future years if required.
7. Point the young man and his family to this website to apply. Once the application is completed, the applicant will gather all required signatures and then return to the Legion representative/designee, whereupon you will review for completeness and then sign as well in the appropriate location of the form.
8. Once all signatures are gathered, please forward both the completed form and payment directly to Department Headquarters. If the delegate did not apply online, please include the paper application as well with appropriate signatures. Mail to:
9. Please complete your selection process and have all registrations completed for those you are sponsoring by June 9.
NOTE: ALL APPLICATIONS MUST BE COMPLETED AND PAYMENT RECEIVED IN DEPARTMENT BY JUNE 10. Any applications and payments received after this time will be placed onto the wait-list, and participation is not guaranteed after that date.
Payment & Program Location
Tuition for the American Legion Connecticut Boys State Program is at $350.00 and applications should be sent to the following address:
Attn: Boys State
The American Legion
Department of Connecticut
269 Main St
Cromwell, CT 06416
Please make all checks payable to American Legion, Department of Connecticut with "Connecticut Boys State" noted on the memo line of the check.
This years program will be held at the University of New Haven, 300 Boston Post Road, West Haven, CT 06516
Please refer to this map for a visual prompter to assist you with planning your trip.
REQUIREMENTS AND PROCESS FOR COUNSELOR SELECTION
In order to be a successful participant in the Connecticut Boys State program, we must ensure that staff are sufficiently familiar with the Connecticut Boys State programming, including politics, recreation time activities and logistics.
- Therefore, the planning committee reserves the right to request additional requirements for any staff applicant who hasn’t a) experienced Connecticut Boys State as a delegate and b) actively participated in the program within 5 years.
- Although we are an open and transparent organization, we believe that a nuanced understanding of our complex program is required to provide meaningful critiques and feedback. Therefore, our formal feedback mechanisms require submitter's to have at least 2 years full-time attendance to the program.
- First year “observer” status for new requests to participate. Observers may be asked to perform administrative tasks that help streamline the program, without major delegate-facing roles.
MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS FOR COUNSELORS
The Connecticut Boys State program involves a LOT of physical activity and relatively long hours (6 am to Midnight). Although there are administrative staffing roles for those who cannot perform all of the following, even those in admin roles will need to walk a minimum of two miles per day over relatively moderate terrain on campus. It is highly recommended that a potential applicant for the role of Boys State Counselor make any physical or health restrictions known early in the process.
The majority of program staff should meet the following requirements:
Have the ability to:
1. Walk an aggregate of 8 miles daily in 90-100 degree heat
2. Walk continuously for up to 1.5 miles per expedition in 90-100 degree heat (crossing ECSU campus)
3. Walk an aggregate of 10 flights of stairs per day
4. Walk continuously up 4 flights of stairs per expedition
5. Navigate a campus map
6. Be able to react to and incorporate sudden changes in the day’s program activities
7. Be extremely prompt and punctual throughout 6-day program
8. Function (with required enthusiasm and energy) for six consecutive days between the hours of 6 am and Midnight.
9. Have the patience and willingness to manage a large group of 17-year old boys with high energy.
In addition, a staff applicant must feel comfortable and be able to directly command up to 35 young adults, many of whom are varsity athletes and either the No. 1 or No. 2 student in their high school class.