Local Students visit Washington, D.C.
15 students from Middle Tennessee spent a week in our nation’s capital last week as delegates on the 2018 Washington Youth Tour. Isaac Leedham From Watertown High School, Tyler St. John and Nancy Carrillo from Cannon County High School, Raphael Fortuna and Anna Addison from Franklin High School, Cierra Kelso from Stewarts Creek High School, Isaac Bland from Lebanon High School, Katelyn Finney from Mt Juliet High School, Kaylin Giavedoni from Smyrna High School, Breanna Bushman from Blackman High School, Adam Lampley from Fairview High School, Olivia Sorensen from Summit High School, Ciaran Francis from Page High School, Alyssa Bradbury from LaVergne High School, and Dannetty Sanders from Riverdale High School were among 135 students from across Tennessee on the weeklong trip that began Friday, June 8.
The annual event, sponsored by Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation and the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association, provides young leaders with an opportunity to explore the nation’s capital, learn about government and cooperatives and develop their leadership skills. Students were selected for the trip by writing winning short stories titled “Electric Cooperatives — Going Beyond the Wires” that explained how co-ops provide communities with much more than electric power.
“Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation is pleased to provide this opportunity for the young people in the communities we serve,” says Jay Sanders, Community Relations Coordinator for Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation “It is a great trip and a wonderful chance for these delegates to learn about history, government, co-ops and leadership.”
“The investments co-ops make in the Youth Tour pay real dividends for these young people and the communities where they live,” said Todd Blocker, vice president of member relations for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association and tour director. “They come home with a deeper understanding of history and government. More importantly, we want them to be prepared to have a positive influence on their hometowns and to consider leadership roles when the opportunities come along.”
While in Washington, D.C., Tennessee’s Youth Tour delegates saw the White House and memorials to past presidents Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt as well as monuments honoring the sacrifices of veterans of World War II and the Vietnam and Korean Wars. During visits to the museums of the Smithsonian Institution, the touring Tennesseans saw and experienced natural, historical and artistic treasures. Other stops included historic homes of former presidents — George Washington’s Mount Vernon and Jefferson’s Monticello — as well as Toby’s Dinner Theatre, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and International Spy Museum. Among other Youth Tour highlights was a solemn and sobering visit to Arlington National Cemetery where the group laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
The group was welcomed to the U.S. Capitol by Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker and members of the Tennessee congressional delegation who posed for photos and answered questions.
“The excitement that co-op leaders and chaperones have for these students tells the story,” said David Callis, CEO of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “These young people are the next generation of doctors and teachers and farmers in the communities we serve. We want them to be passionate about their communities and prepared to lead when those opportunities come along.”
Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation is a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative providing electricity to more than 220,000 residential and business members in Williamson, Wilson, Rutherford and Cannon counties.
Contact Jay Sanders, Community Relations Coordinator at 615-494-1065 or email Jay.Sanders@mtemc.com to learn more about the Washington Youth Tour.
Cutline: 2018 Washington Youth Tour Participants