Audrey Knorr, daughter of Paula Knorr, and Melissa Milke, daughter of Maureen Milke, will represent Palmyra and the American Legion Auxiliary, James R. Hickey Unit 120, at Empire Girls State 2012.

Audrey Knorr, daughter of Paula Knorr, and Melissa Milke, daughter of Maureen Milke, will represent Palmyra and the American Legion Auxiliary, James R. Hickey Unit 120, at Empire Girls State 2012.

Empire Girls State is an educational Americanism program developed to offer a better perspective of the practical government operations and to emphasize the integral part that individuals play within a democratic government. This program, which has been accredited by the New York State Board of Regents for inclusion in the National Program on Non-Collegiate Sponsored Instruction (National PONSI), is a non-partisan attempt to teach the love of “God and Country” to America’s youth.

Qualified high school junior girls are selected to participate in a week-long, educational experience with hands-on workshops on government and the political process.  They design and create a government from the county to the state level. This mythical 51st state allows students to learn the privileges and responsibilities of Citizenship in a democratic society. These young women work tirelessly throughout the week as their participation allows them a greater understanding of their role within democracy.

With the expertise of the Department Americanism chairman, approximately 360 High School Juniors from across the state will also learn proper flag etiquette during their week at Girls State. Students will participate in the creation and execution of either a flag lowering or raising ceremony. The citizens will also receive information on some of the programs that are important components of American Legion Auxiliary organization.  

The 2012 session of Empire Girls State is scheduled to occur from Sunday, June 24 through Saturday, June 30 at SUNY Brockport, where it has been held for the last several years.