2011 Butler County Distinguished Young Woman Barrett Leverette, right, presents 2012 winner Anne Matthews, left, with her medal. The deadline For young women that reside in Butler County and will be high school seniors in the fall to register for the Butler County competition is June 28. (File Photo)
2011 Butler County Distinguished Young Woman Barrett Leverette, right, presents 2012 winner Anne Matthews, left, with her medal. The deadline For young women that reside in Butler County and will be high school seniors in the fall to register for the Butler County competition is June 28. (File Photo)

Archived Story

DYW deadline set for June 28

Published 9:06am Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Starla Jones is hoping to shine a spotlight on some of Butler County’s most talented teens.

Jones, Butler County’s Distinguished Young Women chairperson, said the program offers a once and a lifetime opportunity for young women in the county to compete in a variety of categories.

“We are looking for talented, well-rounded young women that are strong in academics, physically fit, that exhibit grace under pressure and are able to express themselves well,” Jones said.

Young women fitting that description that reside in Butler County and will be high school seniors in the fall will have the opportunity to compete for the title of Butler County’s Distinguished Young Woman.

DYW is a scholarship program that was founded in 1958 in Mobile. It is the largest and oldest national scholarship program for high school girls, and has awarded more than $93 million in cash scholarships at the local, state and national levels since its creation.

In addition to cash scholarships, Distinguished Young Women participants are eligible for college-granted scholarships from almost 200 colleges and universities. According to the DYW website, more than $108 million in college scholarship opportunities were provided to DYW participants last year, some of which included full tuition, room, and board.

Locally, more than $4,200 in scholarship money was awarded last year.

Contestants will compete in five categories: scholastics, interview, talent, fitness and self-expression.

The interview and talent portions of the competition will count for 25 percent of the contestant’s score, while the scholastics portion will count for 20 percent and fitness and self-expression will each count for 15 percent of the overall score.

“I believe one of the best reasons for girls to compete (in the DYW program) is that they get to take part in so many different forms of competition,” Jones said. “They are interviewed. They perform on stage. They get to spend time with other girls from around the county and get to know them. It’s just a wonderful opportunity whether they win or not. I don’t think this program is necessarily something that girls are in to win. I think it’s about them becoming the best they can be. As the name suggests, just by competing in the program these young ladies distinguish themselves from their peers.”

The deadline to register for the Butler County competition is June 28. There is no fee to take part.

To register visit distinguishedyw.org and click the ‘Participate’ link. For more information contact Jones at (334) 376-5621 or (334) 301-5403.

The competition will be held Aug. 24 at the Ritz Theatre in Greenville.

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