Delegates Arrive at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln for the 70th Annual Cornhusker Boys’ State

Delegates overlooking the ceremonious bell sitting atop the lectern at Kimball Hall.

Today the bell tolled from the lectern of Kimball Hall, marking the beginning of the 70th session of Cornhusker Boys’ State. On this day, 353 boys from high schools all across the state of Nebraska arrived at Schramm Hall preparing for an experience that could prove to be life-changing. Throughout the week, these boys will hear from some of the best speakers in the state (and beyond), engage in a large-scale political simulation of the Nebraska state government, and in the end, just one boy will emerge as governor of Boys’ State through 2011, and two will be selected for Boys’ Nation, an experience totally beyond comprehension. At today’s assembly, the boys heard from current Boys’ State governor Bryce Cain and from the 2010 Boys’ Nation representatives from the state of Nebraska, among others. Tonight the boys will have their first chance to emerge as leaders, as each town will elect their city councils and state legislature representatives. Check back for updates on those races and more throughout the week. Let Boys’ State 2010 begin!

Delegates of the 70th Annual Cornhusker Boys' State

Above: Delegates getting checked in

Below: Valley Forge and Bataan citizens get to know each other before the assembly

Flag Bearers Show Their Colors

Under the direction of 1Lt. Cale Farquhar (USACE), the eight-man volunteer color guard practiced the ceremonial raising and lowering of the United States Colors for the first time together.  Their emerging skills promise to raise our spirits and greatly honor our national banner this week.

From the Governor’s Desk: Sunday

Today has been quite fun in my opinion. Hopefully everyone can agree with me that we have a great week in store for us. I enjoyed meeting a few of you already and I’m excited to meet the rest of you in the coming days.

I know a lot of you probably walked in here today planning to run for governor, lieutenant governor, or some other “prestigious” office, but understand that chances are, so did  many others. Don’t let this discourage you from giving it your all, but be prepared with a backup plan to stay involved! For example, last year I participated in legislature and I greatly enjoyed it. Also, there are many opportunities with PACs and other activities.

Just so you are all aware, one of my responsibilities is to appoint judges. This includes the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, associate justices of the Supreme Court, and district judges. This will all be done through an interview process. If you are interested in any of these positions, be sure to file for appointment. This is done with the green form in your folder.

I’m very much looking forward to spending time getting to know all of you this week. If you have any questions feel free to come say hello. My room is 214. Thank you all so much!


Governor Bryce Cain

Oh, and by the way, chorus kids, way to go! I did chorus last year, and whether or not the other “boys staters” know it, they should be very jealous. You get to see the “girls staters” everyday 🙂

Opening the Floodgates on a Plethora of Political Knowledge

By: Chevas Shaw, Yorktown (June 2009)


Upon arriving at Smith Hall, I realized that this was not going to be anything at all like I had ever done before. Not only were the “Boys’ Staters” a perfect blend of all the different types of Nebraskans, but the atmosphere was one that I had never before experienced. Never before had I seen so many young minds focused on learning and bettering themselves and their fellow citizens, and scarcely can I believe that I will see it again.

The kids here are nothing but the Michael Jordans, Muhammad Alis, and Wayne Gretzkys of politics. While most of the young, half-sculpted minds here will probably choose to pursue a career, life, and expertise in something other than politics, this experience will stay with them the rest of their lives. That is what I immediately noticed. It was like a bucket of water to the face on a blistering hot day; once I stepped off that bus and onto the hard pavement of the campus I felt it. I felt the impressions that were going to be made within the next few hours; I felt the guiding hand of all the administrators, counselors, and junior counselors.

The fact that this program was designed to bring people totally out of their element and see how they handle it is both thought-provoking and creatively stimulating. The idea that people for over half of a century have been coming to Lincoln and learning and enjoying themselves is amazing. Judging by what I have seen so far, I think this program will be around for many more full centuries to come.

The people here are awe-inspiring. This program, these people, send people to shake the hand of the President of the United States. That must be an unforgettable rush of both nerves and thoughts. The amount of doors this week that will open for me and for everyone else here can make an unforgettable, potentially life changing, experience. I look forward to being surprised and altered by this “jewel” of a program in a “treasure chest” of leadership paths open to youths today.