Captains and student leaders from six high schools and seven junior high schools attended the Nebo School District’s Winter Academy. The purposes of the Captains’ Academy are to promote sportsmanship between the schools through the captains and leaders working together at the academy, promote better relations between the students and athletes, develop leadership through the academy activities, and develop relationships with coaches and administrators as they present at each academy.

This Winter Captains’ Academy included captains from boys’ basketball, girls’ basketball, wrestling, drill team, student government, boys’ swimming, girls’ swimming, and band.

Superintendent Rick Nielsen started the academy by welcoming the team captains and letting the students know that students come first in Nebo School District. He said, “The key to Captains’ Academy is that it enhances sportsmanship, builds friendships, builds leadership capacity, and embodies all that high school athletics is all about.”

Coach Kirk Chambers, Head Football Coach at Spanish Fork High, played professional football for the following teams: Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Detroit Lions, and the Atlanta Falcons last year.  He led a discussion on “What is a leader?” Then the students worked in groups to answer the questions, “What is a leader?” and “What is the role of a captain?”

Spanish Fork Junior High’s Assistant Principal Mark Bake introduced “Sportsmanship” with a short video clip on YouTube clip by Tom Rinaldi of ESPN. Then the students worked in groups again to answer the questions, “How can we as leaders instill sportsmanship at our school?” and “How can we instill better sportsmanship at our school?”

Each high school sends a captain for each sport. The captains do not sit with their own school; rather, they sit with sport captains and leaders from other high schools. The captains listen to each presenter, and then work collaboratively to present their position and ideas back to the entire group.

The keynote speech was given by Kyle Wilson, an Intermountain Health Care
Clinic Manager. Kyle was a two time All-Stater in football, a two time State Champion Wrestler, a BYU football scholarship recipient, the BYU football team captain, and on the Mountain West Conference All-Academic Team. He addresses various ways on how to become successful.

Everett Kelepolo, Nebo School District’s athletic director and organizer of these academies, said, "Captains’ Academy has provided a powerful forum for athletes and school leaders to discuss and implement essential leadership traits and the value of great sportsmanship."

A big thank you to Laura Salazar, Communications Director at Intermountain Healthcare, for the delicious lunch provided for the captains and leaders.


Student team captains and leaders from the six high schools and seven junior high schools


Image icon High School Captains2.38 MB
Image icon Junior High Captains1.87 MB