Liberty Ledger

A Chance of a Lifetime

Three juniors are finalists in a local contest

Rishi Kondapaneni (back, second one from left) was chosen as one of the winners of the CREC essay contest and will now travel to Washington, D.C.

Rishi Kondapaneni (back, second one from left) was chosen as one of the winners of the CREC essay contest and will now travel to Washington, D.C.

McKenzie Bartels, Reporter

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Cuivre River Electric Cooperative sent out a task for high school students to complete, writing an essay about their principles, in exchange for being able to win scholarships and a trip to Washington, D.C.

Ms. Borders took this opportunity and gave her AP Language students the chance to write and submit essays for this particular contest.

The prompt of the essay was, “What do cooperatives mean to my community,” and high schools in the four county cooperative areas were invited to participate in the contest.

After weeks of writing and editing their essays, Borders sent them off to be judged.

The contest received 98 entries total and there were 12 finalists chosen, three of them from Liberty.

The finalists included juniors Garrett Overton, Rishi Kondapaneni and Christian Tebeau.

“I was really excited when I heard I won and now I’m given a really great opportunity to tour Washington DC,” Kondapaneni said.

After hearing they were finalists, the students were asked to attend a banquet. There, they had to take a cooperative principles quiz and present their speeches to the audience at the banquet.

“The CREC board hosted a wonderful banquet, which I was able to attend to celebrate the wonderful success of these three students,” Borders said.

After, it was announced that Kandapenni was chosen as one of the winners.

As a winner, he will travel to Washington, D.C. with 100 Missouri delegates June 8-14 and will have an opportunity to meet with their representatives from their congressional districts, tour famous monuments, visit the Smithsonian museums as well as Arlington National Cemetery.

“Each summer, the Youth Tour program provides six students from our service area a chance to visit our nation’s capital and learn more about government, leadership and cooperatives,” Tim Schmidt said, who is the Youth Tour coordinator. “We are excited for this year’s delegates to experience what many describe as a trip of a lifetime.”

As finalists, Overton and Tebeau will both receive a $500 Cuivre River Youth Tour Scholarship to the college or university of their choice.

CREC is dedicated to serving communities through exceptional service and a number of different programs, and in the future will continue to support education, providing students with opportunities similar to this one.

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A Chance of a Lifetime