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$16,000 in scholarships awarded to Tennessee students in D.C.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tonight Tennessee’s electric cooperatives awarded $16,000 in scholarships to Washington Youth Tour delegates in Washington, D.C.

Yuridia Garcia, a senior from Appalachian Electric Cooperative was awarded a $10,000 Cooperative Youth Ambassador Scholarship. Garcia was a 2023 delegate on the Washington Youth Tour. Delegates who remain engaged with their sponsoring cooperative during their Senior year and complete certain community service requirements are eligible for the scholarship. Garcia’s name was randomly selected from among the delegates from across the state who completed the requirements.

Charlsie Strech from Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative, Elijah Jones from Appalachian Electric Cooperative and Ayden Anderson from Gibson Electric Membership Corporation were awarded $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000 Robert McCarty Memorial Scholarships for having the first, second and third place papers of the thousands of papers submitted across the state for this year’s contest. McCarty was an employee of Volunteer Energy Cooperative and long-time chaperone on the annual youth tour. McCarty lost a battle with cancer in 2015, and sponsoring cooperatives renamed the scholarship in honor of his love for young people.

Allison Hoesel, a delegate from Middle Tennessee Electric, was selected as Tennessee’s representative on NRECA’s Youth Leadership Council. Hosel will attend NRECA’s 2025 PowerXchange meeting in Atlanta, Georgia..

One hundred and thirty-nine high school Juniors from across the state are in the nation’s capital this week for the 2024 Washington Youth Tour. The annual event teaches students about public policy, history, leadership and electric cooperatives. The tour is coordinated by local electric cooperatives, the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

“Embracing the potential of these young individuals not only nurtures their growth but also secures the future of rural and suburban Tennessee,” expressed Todd Blocker, tour director and vice president of member services for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “Envisioning the positive influence these talented youth will bring to their communities is truly exciting, and electric cooperatives take pride in supporting their educational pursuits.”

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