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      Area high school athletes acquire new leadership skills

      The Upper Peninsula has a new crop of positive leaders!

      Marquette Alger Regional Educational Service Agency, in conjunction with Northern Michigan University and Pathways, hosted a Student Athlete Leadership Program Monday.

      About sixteen students from each high school in Marquette and Alger counties participated in the program. Speakers lectured the students on what it means to be a positive leader in school, in athletics, and in the community through activities, surveys, and pep talks.

      The program was directed at athletes in schools. Sixty to 80 percent of students in U.P. high schools are involved in athletics.

      "Substance use issues are on the rise, mental health issues are on the rise, and with positive leaders, we can combat that," said Charlie Yeager, a Prevention Specialist for MARESA.

      The students evaluated their own current leadership skills and learned how to become a positive influence to those around them.