Students from Lincoln County spent a week in our nation’s capital as delegates on the 2018 Washington Youth Tour.
Diannalee Jimenez-Camacho of Lincoln County High School, Hannah Johnston of Fayetteville High School and Gavin Spicer of Riverside Christian Academy were among 135 students from across Tennessee on the weeklong trip that began Friday, June 8.
The annual event, sponsored by Fayetteville Public Utilities (FPU) and the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association, provides young leaders with an opportunity to explore the nation’s capital, learn about government and cooperatives and develop their leadership skills.
Students were selected for the trip by writing winning short stories titled “Electric Cooperatives — Going Beyond the Wires” that explained how utility companies provide communities with much more than electric power.
“FPU is pleased to provide this opportunity to the young people in the community we serve,” said FPU CEO/General Manager Britt Dye. “It is a great trip and a wonderful chance for these delegates to learn about history, government, rural electric utilities, rural electric utilities and leadership.”
“The investments rural electric utilities make in the Youth Tour pay real dividends for these young people and the communities where they live,” said Todd Blocker, vice president of member relations for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association and tour director. “They come home with a deeper understanding of history and government. More importantly, we want them to be prepared to have a positive influence on their hometowns and to consider leadership roles when the opportunities come along.”
While in Washington, D.C., Tennessee’s Youth Tour delegates saw the White House and memorials to past presidents Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, as well as monuments honoring the sacrifices of veterans of World War II and the Vietnam and Korean Wars. During visits to the museums of the Smithsonian Institution, the touring Tennesseans saw and experienced natural, historical and artistic treasures. Other stops included historic homes of former presidents — George Washington’s Mount Vernon and Jefferson’s Monticello — as well as Toby’s Dinner Theatre, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and International Spy Museum.
Among other Youth Tour highlights was a solemn and sobering visit to Arlington National Cemetery where the group laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns. The group was welcomed to the U.S. Capitol by Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker and members of the Tennessee congressional delegation who posed for photos and answered questions