A new leadership camp for middle school students is seeking to stop the local brain drain.
The Harvey County Community Partnership Xtremely Newton leadership camp is aimed at exposing youth to career possibilities in attempts to entice young people to come back to Newton to live after they attend college.
Hesston already has a similar leadership camp, but this was the first year for the week-long Newton camp.
“Kids are our future. We want kids to come back to Newton to work. We need them in our work force,” said Mari Sailors, counselor.
The 10 campers visited local sponsor businesses, which gave the children chances to  learn about possible professions.
Gase Weller, 14, said he thinks he would be interested in selling insurance.
“I like working with people,” he said. “I think it would be great.”
Weller said he plans to live in Newton after attending college,
“I really like Newton. I was born and raised here. I am really excited about coming back,” he said.
A trip to Newton Medical Center piqued Wyatt Dickinson’s
interest. Dickinson, 13, said he wants to be a pharmacist.
“I think I might come back after graduation,” he said.
The students finished the camp with a community service project at St. Mary Catholic School, which was getting ready for the blessing and dedication of its expanded facility.