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Two FPCA students on Washington Youth Tour
Youth tour
The six area students chosen to represent Coastal EMC on the trip to Washington are, from left, in front, Nicholas Hahn, Richmond Hill High School; Shannon Scarboro, RHHS; Maya Campbell, McIntosh County Academy; Barry Bowens, MCA; Isiah Dickey, First Presbyterian Christian Academy; and, in back, John Killough, FPCA. - photo by Photo provided.

Coastal Electric Cooperative has announced the names of six area student delegates it will send on a week-long, all-expenses paid leadership trip to Washington, D.C., leaving June 9th.

The announcement was made Thursday at a dinner for the students and their parents at the co-op’s office in Midway.

Two of the wining students are rising seniors at First Presbyterian Christian Academy. Isiah Dickey, son of Derrick Dickey and Vanessa Martinez; and John Killough, son of William and Holly Killough.

The other winners are Nicholas Hahn and Shannon Scarboro of Richmond Hill High School and Barry Bowens and Maya Campbell of McIntosh County Academy.

The trip brings together more than 1,600 talented, ambitious young people from across the country for a week in the nation’s capital to further develop their leadership skills and ambitions.

The Washington Youth Tour is sponsored nationally by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and statewide by Georgia Electric Membership Corporation.

As Georgia’s oldest leadership program for teens, the Washington Youth Tour teaches the students about U.S. history, government and public service. The tour was inspired by former president Lyndon Johnson who, in 1957, encouraged electric cooperatives to send youngsters to the capital where they can see the government in action.

The process began in January when principals at high schools in the Coastal Electric service areas were asked to encourage students to compete for a spot on the trip. Applicants should have excelled in academics, extra-curricular activities, community involvement and leadership. Once the field narrows, a panel of judges interviews the finalists.

The six winners earn the top scores after interviews. The competition is designed to reward well-rounded juniors.

Before the Georgia delegates take to the sky enroute to DC, they spend a day in Atlanta. The first activity is a statewide dinner and reception highlighting the achievements of the participating high school students. Before joining their peers in Washington, they participate in team building and ice-breaker activities, as well as learn more about leadership, cooperatives and how rural electrification began.

“This is a leadership trip of a lifetime for these young people,” says Whit Hollowell, Coastal Electric CEO. “The Washington Youth Tour is an opportunity for exceptional students to have a jam-packed backstage pass to our nation’s capital, to personally meet with members of Georgia’s congressional delegation and cement their leadership skills and ambitions. Delegates will visit many historical sites while experiencing the high energy atmosphere in our nation’s capital.”

Since 1964, the Washington Youth Tour has given more than 50,000 students representing 640 of America’s electric cooperatives the opportunity to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Each student will also receive a $1,000 scholarship from the Coastal Electric Cooperative Foundation. The foundation’s support comes from the Coastal’s members, who voluntary contribute on their electric bills through Operation RoundUp. Electric bills are rounded up each month to the next whole dollar. The average contribution is $6 per year but this small change helps to change the lives of many young people.

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