APES or officially, The American Private Enterprise System, is a program designed by the University of Kentucky, and here in Logan County is a partnership between the Extension Office, the Chamber of Commerce, Logan County High School and Russellville High School. Ten students from each high school are selected to participate based on their GPA standing in school.
Each day of the program begins with local business leaders in the community presenting on various topics covering all aspects of doing business in America. Topics include cooperatives, investor owned corporations, how America is organized to do business, the role of government in business, how our economy works and sole proprietorships. After each presentation, students take a short quiz on the material. These quiz scores are used to determine who will receive a scholarship and trip to the Kentucky Youth Seminar in June. The students are also exposed to some businesses in the community by taking tours. This year the tours included the Russellville Dental Lab and Sensus Precision Die Casting. On the tours, the students were able to get an idea of the diversity of businesses in Logan County and see all the opportunities for business we have here.
This program helps increase the knowledge young people have in the American economic system as well as the global economy through individual and group study. Objectives of the program are to prepare participants for an active role in business through involvement with business leaders; provide an exchange of ideas among students and local business and professional leaders; and acquaint students with career opportunities in business.
This popular program has two major conferences at the end of each year. The Kentucky Youth Seminar offers many different workshops that reinforce what was learned during the local program. There are also competitions where the students compete for different prizes and scholarships as well as the chance to become one of the program’s top youth scholars. This year, Caleb Wills and Jennifer Gibbs will be attending the Kentucky Youth Seminar.
Top scholars from the KYS have the opportunity to go to the National Institute on Cooperative Education (NICE), expenses paid and compete for even more prizes and scholarships held this year at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.
For more information on the APES program or any other programs offered by the Cooperative Extension Service, please contact the Logan County Extension Office at 270-726-6323.