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Each year electric membership cooperatives (EMCs) across Georgia, including Sumter EMC, send high school students to the nation’s capital for a week of friendship, fun, and learning. The Washington Youth Tour is an opportunity for students to grow in their leadership journey and experience a once-in-a-lifetime trip.

The 2023 tour takes place June 15-22, when hundreds of EMCs across the country, including Sumter EMC, send more than 1,800 participants to Washington D.C. for a chance to enjoy a full week of visiting the nation’s most treasured memorials and monuments and learn about the unique aspects of the cooperative business model.

According to Andrea Walker, VP of Marketing and Administration with Sumter EMC, inspiring future leaders is at the core of the Washington Youth Tour. Since 1964, more than 50,000 young Americans from across the country have taken advantage of this special opportunity offered by their local electric cooperative.

This year, more than 100 high school students across Georgia will be selected for this week-long trip. The tour is not just an opportunity to visit the nation’s capital, but also a chance to gain crucial leadership skills and interact with fellow delegates from varying backgrounds and geographies.

If selected, students, will find that their voices matter when given the opportunity to discuss important issues with elected officials during the trip. “Meeting our legislators in Washington is just one of many activities that teen delegates experience during the week,” said Mrs. Walker.  “This trip changes participants’ perspectives and benefits them far into the future. As one recent delegate’s mother said about her child’s experience, ‘his world is larger, his vision longer, and his aspirations greater’ because of the tour.”

In January, Sumter EMC will begin the process to select local students to attend the 2023 Washington Youth Tour. If students are members of Sumter EMC, meet the age/year requirement, or know of another exceptional student who would be a great candidate for the program, please contact Sumter EMC for more information.

Applications will be accepted through January 20, 2023.

Sumter EMC is consumer-owned cooperative providing electricity and related services to more than 15,000 members in 11 counties.