Pedernales Electric Cooperative District 7 Director and Board President Dr. Patrick Cox, back row, left, and PEC CEO John D. Hewa, back row, right, with the 2015 PEC Youth Tour contest-winning students at the Nov. 20 reception at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin. The winning students are, front row from left, Danielle Snow, Leander High School; Lois Bronaugh, Jack C. Hays High School and Nathan Archibald, Leander High School. Back row, second from left, are Emily Moseley, Lago Vista High School; McKelle Winsor, Leander High School and Matthew Archibald, Leander High School.
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Six high school students from within the Pedernales Electric service area won an expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., through the Cooperative’s Youth Tour essay contest. The 2015 Youth Tour winners are: Matthew Archibald and Nathan Archibald, Leander High School; Lois Bronaugh, Jack C. Hays High School; Emily Moseley, Lago Vista High School; and Danielle Snow and McKelle Winsor, Leander High School. These students were honored Nov. 20 at an awards reception at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.
This year’s contest required students to develop a school community service project, including details about its timeline, budget and the impact and benefits to the school. The essay instructions called for students to persuade readers to volunteer for, donate to or provide materials for the project. Essays were between 700 and 900 words and required a bibliography containing all source material for the proposal.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Texas Youth Tour, and PEC’s contest winners will spend 10 days on the trip next June with approximately 120 students from other Texas cooperatives. They’ll tour state landmarks in Austin in celebration of the Texas tour’s anniversary before travelling to Washington. Once there, they will have the opportunity to see government in action firsthand and bring that knowledge back to better their communities.
“We were very impressed with the creativity behind these entries,” said PEC Vice President of Communications & Business Services Michael Racis. “The passion behind these proposals was clear, and it was amazing to see the level of detail included in the projects.”
PEC has participated in the Youth Tour program for more than 30 years. President Lyndon B. Johnson was instrumental in helping establish both PEC and the national Youth Tour program, suggesting the concept to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association when he was a U.S. senator. Since then, the program has grown to almost 1,500 young people making the trip to Washington each year to learn more about cooperative business, tour historical sites and meet local political representatives.
More than 425 students from throughout PEC’s service area participated in the contest. Learn more about the Youth Tour at www.pec.coop/youthtour. Excerpts from the winning essays will be posted to the site soon.