Every June for over 50 years, high school students from across the United States gather in Washington D.C. for a week long, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to participate in the Electric Cooperative Youth Tour. Tri-County Electric Cooperative sponsored four local high school juniors to attend this year’s Youth Tour: Alexis Kornegay, Madison County High School, Katie Mays, James Madison Prep School, Samyia Howard, Jefferson County Middle High School and Sydney Aman, Taylor County High School.
From June 10 to June 15, these four young ladies represented TCEC as they traveled from North Florida to Washington, D.C. with 31 other students from electric co-ops in Florida and joined over 1,800 students from co-ops across the United States. All brought together by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, NRECA.
This unique trip gives students the opportunity to learn about our nation’s history by exploring museums, monuments and memorials. The Holocaust Museum, WWII Memorial, and the Washington Monument are just a few of the stops along the way. The students had the rare opportunity to visit the recently opened African American History Museum. Walking through President George Washington’s home at Mount Vernon and standing where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his “I Have a Dream” speech gave these students an opportunity to experience history and see the possibilities of the future.
Touring Arlington National Cemetery and watching the Sunset Parade are often the most powerful moments of the trip for the students as they reflect on the price paid for their freedoms.
A tour of the Capitol was concluded with visits from congressmen representing Florida where the students were able to meet with them, take pictures, and ask questions about congressional matters important to them. Congressman Al Lawson and Congressman Neal Dunn both took time from their busy schedules to meet with the four young ladies from TCEC who live, work, and attend school in their districts.
Kornegay, Mays, Howard, and Aman worked hard for this opportunity. The top four out of 10 applicants, these young ladies excel in leadership, academics, extracurricular activities and community service.
“Youth Tour 2017 was a life-changing experience for these girls. Now that they are back in their hometowns, we look to them to be ambassadors for the co-op, continued leaders in their communities, and good stewards of the environment with the common goal of enriching the future for themselves and those around them” said Kaitlynn Culpepper, TCEC Community Relations Specialist and Youth Tour Chaperone.
If you would like more information regarding this rewarding program, please contact Kaitlynn Culpepper at (850) 973-8036 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications for the 2018 Youth Tour will be available in October 2017 at tcec.com and with guidance counselors in schools across our service territory.