A local organization whose goal is to prepare high school students for constructive leadership holds its first mentoring meeting of the New Year. Youth Leadership Calhoun County met at the Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce to build relationships between students and mentors with a luncheon. Leadership Calhoun County Chairperson Kelley Pearce says the program is a great network and provides participating students the opportunity to be involved in the affairs of the community. Pearce says the Youth Leadership Calhoun County is a sub-program of the adult program sponsored by the Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce. Not only were the students introduced to their mentors today, but, they also travelled to Gadsden State Community College to identify their leadership potential by taking a personality test. White Plains High School Junior Andrew McCarter says the program exposes them to all the benefits of leadership. Mentor Benjamin Simmons says he went through Leadership Calhoun County in 2014 and now he is on the advisory committee. He says the program gives a lot of perspective. And he adds, the program selects a diverse class of highly motivated high school juniors who represent the diversity of racial, ethnic, and socio-economic groups in Calhoun County. The program meets once a month and officially starts after school begins for the New Year. Program participants will graduate from the program in May. They will receive a certificate and opportunities for scholarships.