Be Somebody Program

In 2005, inspired by his work on Wall Street, James P. Owen penned the book Cowboy Ethics: What Wall Street Can Learn from the Code of the West. This beautifully written book and its timeless Principles became the basis for the Wyoming State Code, which was written into law in July 2010.

Shortly after that, Mr. Owen approached the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming interested in developing a youth program based on the Code of the West. What began as a simple 20 lesson curriculum has now expanded to over 500 pages of lessons and activities which inspire youth along a path of self discovery.

We provide professional training to implement the Be Somebody: Cowboy Ethics Program. Trainings are conducted by Wyoming Youth Initiative members Jessica Baxter and Sara Beth Lyon. To learn more about how to implement the Be Somebody: Cowboy Ethics Program in your school or organization, contact us.

Cowboy Ethics and the Code of the West

Our Be Somebody programming is based on Cowboy Ethics, a beautifully written book by James P. Owens reminds us of a time and a place when your handshake was as good as a contract; where people drew a line and kept their promises.  Inside this book, Owen outlines Ten Principles to Live By; the Code of the West.

Designed to Inspire, Not Instruct.

Unlike many character education programs, we don’t try to tell young people what to believe – that never works. We respect their ability to decide for themselves.

As one student put it …
“This class really about cowboys at all; it’s about being a better person inside yourself.”

Programs for High School Students

Be Somebody, a strategy-based program curriculum for high school students, is built around the 10 Principles of the Code of the West. In an experiential learning setting, through games, activities, writing and discussion, group members seek out and discover the answers to 3 Key Questions:

1) What do I believe?
2) Why do I believe it?
3) How does my life show it?

Programs for Elementary Students

The elementary version of the Be Somebody program is based on Owen’s second book Cowboy Values.

Each month focuses on a different value as outlined in the book. Geared toward younger learners (ages 5-12), this program uses the same experiential learning concept to teach youth how we can all live best in a community by showing honor and respect, and living authentically.