07/08/09 — Local students attend youth tour

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Local students attend youth tour

By Staff Reports
Published in News on July 8, 2009 1:43 PM

DUDLEY -- Laura Outlaw of Mount Olive, Amber Henninger of Seven Springs and Michaela Daughtry of Pink Hill were among more than 1,500 high school students nationwide who attended the 2009 Rural Electric Youth Tour June 13-19 in Washington, D.C.

Participants learned about electric cooperatives, American history and the U.S. government. Students also had the opportunity to visit the historic sights of the nation's capital. Tri-County Electric Membership Corporation sponsored the three local students.

This year, North Carolina students who attended the Youth Tour were able to meet 10 of North Carolina's 13 members of the U.S. House of Representatives. The representatives stressed the importance of contacting elected officials to the students. The youths also met with Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), who talked to the students about the nation's energy policy.

The Youth Tour has brought students to Washington, D.C. since the late 1950s. To date, more than 40,000 students from small towns across the nation have participated in this program. Past participants of the Youth Tour have gone on to design airplanes, work as congressional aides on Capitol Hill and serve in some of the highest ranks of government, including the U.S. Senate.

The Youth Tour aims to educate youth on all aspects of rural electrification in order to promote a better understanding of the value of rural electric cooperatives. The Youth Tour provides an opportunity for youth to visit monuments, government buildings and cooperative-related organizations in order to become familiar with the historical and the political environment of the nation's capital. The trip also gives participants an opportunity to meet elected officials and to better understand how the federal government operates.

The Rural Electric Youth Tour is a joint effort of local electric co-ops, such as Tri-County EMC, statewide co-op associations and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association in Arlington, VA.