National Leadership Forum

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    Hands-on leadership training

    Student leaders in grades 10-12 will gain invaluable training to become leaders in their schools.

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    Explore economic and cultural principles

    Students will become more equipped to preserve the ideas upon which America was founded.

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    A line up of dynamic speakers

    Students will experience media, discussions and labs that emphasize strong leadership and excellent character.


June 2-7, 2024


The American Studies Institute is proudly preparing for Harding University’s annual National Leadership Forum in Searcy, Arkansas. 

We invite high school students from across the nation to join us for an empowering and enlightening forum, where they will dive deep into the worlds of leadership, civic engagement, and American heritage. The National Leadership Forum is a unique opportunity for high school students to explore their potential as leaders and engaged citizens. The program is designed to foster personal growth, instill a sense of civic responsibility, and inspire a deeper appreciation for the rich heritage of the United States.

It is open to student leaders in grades 10, 11 and 12. They must have excellent character and demonstrate leadership ability.

The forum includes a university campus experience. Students will attend sessions in campus facilities and will be housed in traditional dorm rooms with a roommate of the same gender. College-aged counselors will provide supervision for men's and women's residence halls. Learn more about what to bring with the Packing List pdf.

Plan to arrive Sunday afternoon from 4-6 P.M. Dinner will be at 6 P.M. that evening. All activities will begin at 7:30 P.M. Transportation and associated costs are to be arranged by each applicant and/or his sponsor.

The cost is $180 for the week.


2024 Registration Form


More information coming soon.

About The National Leadership Forum

Developed in 1956 at the request of the Civitan Clubs in Alabama and West Florida, the National Leadership Forum was created to develop a better understanding and appreciation for American heritage while helping develop public speaking skills among high-achieving high school students. Civic clubs, Farm Bureaus, and other organizations have sponsored students' attendance in cooperation with Harding University's American Studies Institute.

The National Leadership Forum gives students the opportunity to learn from and gain insight and wisdom from accomplished leaders who have made significant contributions in the fields of politics, public service, and community development. Students will participate in hands-on workshops that will help develop essential leadership skills, learn about effective communication, and understand the dynamics of civic engagement. They will explore American heritage and gain a deeper understanding of the nation's history, its values, and its role in the world. Students will also have the ability to connect with like-minded peers from diverse backgrounds and regions while building lasting friendships and establishing valuable contacts for future endeavors. 

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National Leadership Forum