The city of Goleta is accepting applications for its second LEAD Goleta Community Academy.  

LEAD stands for Learn, Empower, Advocate and Discuss.

This free interactive and eye-opening six-week program is designed to help community members better understand the role that local government plays so that they can effectively participate, share that knowledge with others, and even consider a future role in city governance.

Don’t miss this unique and enlightening experience.

The upcoming LEAD Goleta Community Academy will be 6-8 p.m. Wednesdays beginning Jan. 8, 2020, and ending Feb. 12, with a celebratory graduation ceremony. Most classes will be held at City Hall Council Chambers at 130 Cremona Drive, Suite B, but some may be held in the community.

Each class will be interactive and feature different key city departments, providing a behind-the-scenes view of how the city of Goleta operates. Attendees will learn everything from how roads are maintained to what goes into creating the city’s budget. 

The first LEAD Goleta was held earlier this year. Of the 16 graduates, three now sit on commissions.  

One is Park and Recreation Commissioner Wayne Rascati, who said: “I encourage anyone who wants to know more about how our wonderful community works and provides services to our residents to take this class. It doesn’t matter whether you want to be on a board or commission or just want to be informed.

“I know that these sessions prepared me to become a Park and Recreation commissioner, but it also prepared me to be informed about the issues. All the participants wanted to explore how we can spread the message of good things happening in Goleta.”

Teri Carter, another graduate, added: “What an awesome opportunity and experience to participate in LEAD Goleta. Even if you have lived in Goleta for a very long time, you may not know how your local government works and all the things they do. You will also have the opportunity to meet Goleta’s elected officials, staff and other participants who live in the Goleta area.”

Mayor Paula Perotte said she loved getting to know the participants. 

“It’s incredibly rewarding to see how much they learn and grow over the course of LEAD Goleta, and how their perspectives change from when they walk in the door to when they receive their graduation certificates,” Perotte said.

There are only 25 spots in the LEAD Goleta Community Academy and they will fill up fast, so apply today. While LEAD Goleta is open to Santa Barbara County residents, priority is given to Goleta residents.

Teens and college students are encouraged to apply.  Participants must be able to attend all six classes in order to be considered.

For more information and to apply, go to: https://tinyurl.com/LEADGoleta.