Mission and Philosophy Statement
It is the mission of the Pioneer Youth Corps of Oregon to provide middle and high school aged young people with a sound foundation of academic knowledge and leadership skills to include traits of good character and morality that will enable them to become productive and responsible adult citizens of their community, state, and nation.
To that end, the Pioneer Youth Corps of Oregon bases our training in leadership skills and character development in the following philosophy:
EFFORT: Nothing in this world is truly free. Everything has a price and you must decide if you are willing to pay the price for your actions, both right and wrong. You will get ahead only through the amount of work and effort you are willing to put into your life and toward your goals.
DISCRIMINATION: PYCO is a team. To be an effective team we must all work together, there is no room for bigotry. Discrimination and bigotry will destroy this nation as well as the PYCO team. No one race, religion, or gender is superior to any other. This is true in PYCO and everywhere else. This does not mean that we should not be proud of our individual accomplishments, but it is not necessary or productive to look down on others in order to feel good about ourselves.
EQUALITY: All people are entitled to the opportunity to achieve their dreams in life as long as they are willing to work for them. Not all people have equal abilities but all are entitled to an equal opportunity to put whatever abilities they have to the best use they can. There is no “level playing field”; we must all use the skills and abilities we have to work for what we wish to achieve in life. It is important to remember that your life and future is worth your best effort.
COMPETITION: Competition encourages growth and effort. Competition is a very real part of life and should not be ignored or avoided. Loss in a competition does not mean defeat. Defeat is only for people who do not get up and try again. Sports teams that are beaten in a game do not disband, they work harder next time.
ACCOUNTABILITY: Life will eventually force us to face our behaviors, our actions, and ourselves. The test of real maturity is a person’s ability to face the decisions they made and the actions they have taken in their lives and take credit when it is earned and responsibility when it is required. It is part of the PYCO Philosophy to teach Cadets that they will be judged by their behavior in this world not by their feelings or by their potential or some nebulous “inner goodness”.
DISCIPLINE: Discipline is made up of the rules and standards we apply to our own lives. It is the method by which we become the person we wish to be. It is the standards that we have decided are important for us to live by. We may learn our discipline from many sources but once we accept what we have learned it becomes our personal standard. We may learn to play basketball from a couch but only when we apply the skills we have learned will we become a basketball player rather than just someone who plays at basketball.
AMERICA: It is right to be proud of our country and it’s accomplishments. America is still the finest example of democracy in this world, and there is much about our nation of which we can be proud. This is not to say that WE as the people of the United States have not made mistakes, and that inequities have not occurred to people within our country. It is for that reason that we must work harder and strive more, to eliminate the inequities that exist, to treat all people with the utmost courtesy and respect, and to teach the students in PYCO to do the same. We must focus our efforts on the positive, and hold high the lives and efforts of many fine Americans, as the role models and examples for our students to follow.