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Washington Youth Tour - Scholarships! Expense-Paid Trip to DC!

Each year, seven high school juniors from the Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative service area (Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry counties) have an incredible chance to spend a week in our nation’s capital getting a front row view of government, leadership and public policy.

The Washington Youth Tour, sponsored by MLEC and the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association, provides young leaders with an opportunity to explore the Washington, D.C., learn about government and cooperatives and develop their leadership skills. Students are selected for the trip by writing a short story that explains how co-ops provide communities with much more than electric power.

“The youth tour is an incredible opportunity for these students to actually experience history up-close and personal,” says MLEC Member Services Manager Vanessa Clayborn “Delegates experience a whirlwind of a week, visiting museums, monuments and other landmarks.”

President Lyndon Johnson inspired the tour in 1957 when he encouraged electric cooperatives to send youngsters to the nation’s capital. In the years since, more than 6,000 young Tennesseans have been delegates for the Washington Youth Tour.

“Our commitment to community is what sets cooperatives apart from other businesses,” said MLEC President and CEO Keith Carnahan. “The Washington Youth Tour is one way we show the youth of our service area that their co-op is more than their electricity provider. We genuinely care about the prosperity of our communities, and that includes providing special opportunities for these exceptional students and preparing them for future success.”

The Washington Youth Tour Creative Writing and Scholarship Competition is open to high school juniors:

2017-2018 Theme:  “Going Beyond The Wires”


MLEC Deadline: March 1, 2018 (Junior English teachers will require an earlier deadline.)

Win:  The top winner from each MLEC school wins an expense-paid, week-long trip to D.C. MLEC also awards a $1,000 scholarship to the top boy and girl at each high school in the counties that it serves.*  The overall top student in MLEC’s service area wins a $2000 scholarship, competes for up to an additional $3,000 in scholarships, and wins the trip to D.C. for their English teacher.  There is also a $10,000 scholarship opportunity for one Tennessee student participating in the WYT! (*Home schooled/private school students will be grouped with the public high school that they would attend. All scholarship winners must reside within the MLEC service area.)

Contact Vanessa Clayborn, MLEC Manager of Member Services at 931.729.7232 or to learn more about the Washington Youth Tour. 

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