Carthage’s Douglas Ball to take part in Envision’s National Youth Leadership Forum Pathways to STEM


This summer, Douglas Ball from Carthage, Mo will join outstanding elementary school students from across the country to take part in a unique academic and career oriented development experience, the National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Pathways to STEM, taking place in Chicago, IL the first week in July.

NYLF Pathways to STEM is one of the Envision family of programs ( that enable students to explore their interests and experience learning beyond the classroom.

Douglas was nominated to attend the forum by his fourth-grade teacher, Trudy Blankenship at Pleasant Valley Elementary. In addition to having a natural ability with mathematics, Douglas is also passionate about engineering, building his own inventions out of whatever he finds around the house, and soccer. He believes that his creativity and love of art and music help to amplify his knack for all things STEM. Inspired by Leonardo Da Vinci, Douglas wrote his pre-forum paper on how the same man that painted the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper invented the anemometer, scuba gear, and inspired the helicopter among so many other astonishing inventions.


“As an alumna of Envision myself, I am excited for Douglas Ball to meet, work, and collaborate with fellow high-aspiring students from other cities and schools,” said Amanda Freitag Thomas, SVP for Envision. “Hands down, my favorite part of attending an Envision program was being with motivated students in an environment designed to help us challenge our assumptions, meet new people, and grow. Creating that same learning environment is a central focus for all of our programs. At NYLF Pathways to STEM, students build the confidence and skills needed to excel in the classroom while gaining exposure to STEM fields and concepts. They learn how to adapt to and communicate in new situations, to new challenges, and with new people, which, given how rapidly the world is changing due to technology and innovation, are essential skills for success.”

Since 1985, Envision programs have served more than 800,000 students in more than 145 countries, with programs designed to help students develop the leadership, scholarship and career skills needed to succeed in today’s competitive college and career landscape.


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