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October 4, 2012

Milford senior plans for leadership project

The Bezos Scholar Program is about cultivating big ideas. It is a leadership development program that offers pathways for students and educators to put their education into action.

Milford Central School senior Spencer O’Bryan plans on doing just that. His goal is to start broadcasting local news and happenings online. He said he also wants to feature local people and businesses in short video clips.

“We want to have a place where people from local schools and other towns can post what is going on in little video clips,” he said.

The intention, he said, is to have one centralized place for people to learn about what the area has to offer.

“People really seem to associate New York with New York City, and there is so much more going on. So I thought if I could bring light to all that is going on around here, it would be really beneficial to the area. We have a lot to offer and it would be really great to get that out there,” O’Bryan said.

The teen was one of 12 high school juniors from the U.S. selected as a 2012 Bezos Scholar. O’Bryan and MCS librarian Philip Durkin were able to attend the Aspen Ideas Festival during the summer where they met and shared meals with politicians, journalists, artists, scientists, inventors, environmentalists, national security experts and other change-makers from around the world.

Student and Education Scholars attend six days of seminars, tutorials, lectures and debates. The program is a journey that begins in Aspen, Colo., and continues throughout the following school year as scholars return home to launch their own big ideas. Their task is to create a sustainable local ideas festival that is intended to transform their schools and communities.

Durkin said he had never been to Aspen before and the seminars blew his mind. He said he and O’Bryan had breakfast with New York Times op-ed columnist David Brooks.

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