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Students gain valuable experience on Youth Tour

Aderick Moore, left, and Emiley Wells, right, were sponsored by Pioneer Electric Cooperative to take part in the Washington D.C. Youth Tour. (Submitted Photo)

Aderick Moore, left, and Emiley Wells, right, were sponsored by Pioneer Electric Cooperative to take part in the Washington D.C. Youth Tour. (Submitted Photo)

By Beth Hyatt
The Greenville Advocate

Alabama Youth Tour was re-introduced this year to the students of Butler, Conecuh, Covington, Crenshaw, Dallas, Lowndes, Monroe and Wilcox Counties. 

Pioneer Electric sponsored four students to attend the Montgomery Youth Tour and two students to attend the Washington D.C. Youth Tour.

“We brought back Youth Tour this year for the first time in about 10 years,” said Casey Rogers, Pioneer Electric’s Youth Tour coordinator. “It’s something that gives back to the community so much that we think it’s a positive thing we need to start back. I’m really glad that Pioneer brought this program back.”

The requirements for the interested students were as follows: must be in their junior year of high school, must reside in one of the previously mentioned counties, must submit an application to Rogers and must participate in an interview with a panel of three judges. Four students were chosen to participate in the Montgomery Youth Tour: Harrison Adams of Morgan Academy, Aderick Moore of Selma High School, Beverly (Millie) Motes of Lowndes Academy and Emiley Wells of Fort Dale Academy. The two who ventured to Washington D.C. were Emiley Wells and Aderick Moore.

“We were really looking for the overall well-rounded candidate. I was looking for someone that this, I felt, would benefit well,” said Rogers of the task of choosing students.

While in Washington, the students listened to motivational speakers, toured national monuments, took a boat tour of the Potomac, visited museums and took a trip to the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts. These students were also able to participate in a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery; the wreath was provided by Alabama Youth Tour and is a privilege that the students from Alabama get to experience.

“My favorite part of Alabama Youth Tour 2015 was really getting to know al the people that were just like me and Aderick, just from other parts of the state,” said Wells.

“It is unbelievable how close we became in just six short days. I think I have truly made friends for life and I can’t wait for the reunion next year. Also, thank you to Pioneer Electric, AREA and all others who made this trip possible.”

The two made many friends from around the state and gained an experience like no other.

“From this youth tour, I gained friendships that are unbreakable. I gained that there’s a lot in the world that you can accomplish, you just have to be willing to step outside of your comfort zone and achieve what you believe,” said Moore.

“I gained from the electric co-ops that reaching out and helping is sometimes the most effective way in a peer’s life. They have given me and all the other youth tour students from over the world an experience of a lifetime, and so I’m thankful for that.”