Citizens Academy

The Valdese Citizens Academy is a program designed to educate Valdese Citizens on the ins & outs of local government. Sessions will be held for seven consecutive nights and will include tours of the fire station, police station and water plants. Participants who attend at least six sessions will receive a graduation certificate.

Citizens Academy Itinerary: 

*Session One | Welcome 
Participants will meet at Valdese Town Hall for a meet and greet with Mayor and Town Council. At 6:15pm welcome and introductions will begin in the Council Chambers. Gretchen Costner from the Waldensian Presbyterian Museum will give a brief history of the Town of Valdese and its Waldensian settlers. Town Manager, Seth Eckard, will also present  an overview of local government. Participants will be asked to come up with a project that would help Valdese in a specific way and present it to Mayor & Town Council on the last night of the program. 

Session Two | Public Works
Participants will meet at the Valdese Public Works Facilty. Public Works Director, Bryan Duckworth will share a presentation touching on 5 individual departments that make up the Public Works umbrella. The presentation will discuss services of each of these departments and provide their maintenance responsibilities. A short question and answer session will follow the presentation. Participants will view the important pieces of equipment that are used daily to provide services to the Town of Valdese. 

Session Three | Wastewater & Water Plants
Participants will divided into 2 groups of 10 and where they will tour the Water Plant & Wastewater Treatment Facilities. Tours will be given of both plants.  

Session Four | Community Affairs & Planning
Participants will meet in the Old Rock School Waldensian Room and the program will begin with a presentation from the Planning Director. The session will continue with a tour of the Old Rock School by the Community Affairs & Tourism Director. The Community Affairs Director will discuss the facets of the department. Examples include Main Street Program, Day Trips, Old Colony Players, Downtown Events etc. 

Session Five | Recreation Department
Participants will meet at the Recreation Department and a presentation of the various programs/activities that are provided by the Valdese Parks and Recreation Department will be shared. Participants will then be offered a tour of the Valdese Family Splash Pad Park.  

Session Six | Fire & Police Department
Participants will meet at the Fire & Police Station located on Faet Street. Fire & Police Chiefs will tour participants through each department. 

*Session Seven | Conclusion & Graduation of Program
Participants will meet at Valdese Town Hall and will present their project to Mayor & Town Council. A question & answer session will be held moderated by the Mayor and a survey will be handed out for participants to give feedback of the program. Graduation & Presentation of Certificates will conclude the session and the program. 

*Hors d' oeuvres will be served on these nights. Snacks and water will be provided every other night. 

**Itinerary is subject to change.

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