The Henrico Citizen

JRA recruiting students for James River Leadership Expeditions 

Share this article:

(Courtesy JRA)

The James River Association is currently seeking student and teacher applications for James River Leadership Expeditions, a year-long program for high-schoolers interested in advocating for the James River.

The JRLE program is segmented into four sessions running from July 2023 through May 2024, and it provides students with the opportunity to enjoy river-based education, build new friendships, develop leadership skills, and carry out a community capstone project. JRA will accept 30 students in the 2023-24 program across the James River watershed.

The program kicks off in Session One with overnight summer paddle adventures on the James River. These trips are divided into three excursions covering the Upper, Middle, and Lower James.  Throughout the trip, students learn technical skills such as how to canoe and camp overnight and they receive further education through unparalleled access to local culture, history, and environmental teachings. 

Continuing into the school year, JRLE’s second session offers an overnight brainstorming event where students discuss community capstone projects together. The third session consists of a working group complete with games that tap into personality styles, self-awareness, public speaking, and relationship management. The program ends with Session Four, a leadership launch and environmental symposium, where students can present their capstone projects and celebrate their accomplishments for the year.

“If I could tell students one thing, it’s that you will never experience something like this again,” comments JRLE alum Nash McDowell. “The James River Association is offering an incredible experience that I wouldn’t trade for the world. To spend one week on the James River, technology-free, with good company, is something very hard to find. When the opportunity presents itself, take it.”

For details and to apply, visit

Our coverage is free – but we need your help to provide it

You might notice that you didn’t have to pay to read this article. That’s because we’ve never implemented a paywall in our 21 years of existence. We believe that access to trustworthy, fair local news coverage is a fundamental human right, and we are determined to keep all of our coverage free for everyone to consume.

This access is important because it helps readers connect with their community, helps them learn about what’s happening around them (good and bad), promotes community conversations and prompts meaningful action. More than 70,000 people read our coverage each month, and we believe our community is better for it.

But as a small company, simply giving away our “product” for free to everyone isn’t a sustainable business model. That’s why every voluntary contribution we receive – no matter how large or small – is critically important.

We know that not everyone can or will support our work financially. But if you are in a position to do so, we need you. Invest in our trustworthy local journalism today so that thousands more in our community can benefit from it.

Click here to Contribute!

Share this article:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.