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Growing leaders in Colonie

Colonie Central High School student Steven Sleasman said it's better to have friends than enemies.

That mantra, along with a number of extracurricular activities, helped Sleasman land a weeklong trip sponsored by the Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership to a leadership conference at the end of July.

Sleasman said he is honored to be chosen for the conference and his selection was based largely on his performance at the regional Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership conference at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Saturday and Sunday, June 12 and 13.

A lot if it was stressing the importance of being part of the community, he said.

Sleasman said he has a goal of 100 hours community service this year.

He is looking forward to representing the New York East conference of HOBY at its national convention at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Sleasman, president of the sophomore class at Colonie Central High School, said his experience at the RPI conference helped him "learn to deal with different people."

Sleasman said his ability to work well with others helps him standout and contributed to his being selected to go to California.

"I don't really make many enemies," he said. "I think it was based on how I was a leader of my group."

He will represent 22 counties and 227 members at the conference.

HOBY's annual leadership seminar, titled the World Leadership Congress, takes place from July 23 to July 30.

Close to 400 students from high schools around the globe will congregate for the educational seminar.

"The WLC provides youth with training in leadership skills and capacity building. Students are exposed to a distinguished group of leaders from various sectors in business, government, international affairs, science and technology, medicine, media and education," according to the organization's Web site. "HOBY's student 'ambassadors' leave the WLC more mature individuals, more aware of the world around them, and more empowered to make meaningful contributions to their communities."

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