Braden Bateman from Ratcliff and Larissa Baird of Ozark, are the recent winners of an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. The two students were selected as winners of an essay contest sponsored by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and Arkansas Valley Electric Cooperative Corporation.
Braden is a Junior at County Line High School and is the son of James and Monica Bateman. He is a member of the basketball team and is involved with FFA, Beta Club, and FCA. He has been on the student council and will be attending Boy’s State. Braden is a member of the National Society of High School Scholars and serves as a youth coach and referee. Braden’s hobbies include: basketball, politics, hunting, and fishing. He plans to obtain a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering and eventually work to synthesize medications or work in a petroleum refinery.
Larissa is the daughter of John and Amber Barbour and the granddaughter of Dwayne and Delana Patterson. She is a Junior at Ozark High School. Larissa is Vice-President of her class and is a member of FBLA, Beta Club, and Interact. She is an Honor Roll student and was sponsored by the Rotary club to go to a leadership camp. Larissa’s hobbies include: doing crafts with her Nana, youth activities within her church, working on community service projects, and animals (especially cats). Her future goal is to become an X-ray technician and to become certified to do CT scans.
Each year, a contest is held for high school juniors whose parents or guardians are members of Arkansas Valley Electric Cooperative Corporation. For this year’s contest, the students were asked to write an essay on “Why I Would Be a Good Youth Tour Representative.” A panel of judges selected the two winners from the entries submitted.
These students, along with about 40 other Arkansas youth, will travel to Washington D.C. Upon arrival, they will join thousands of other youth from across the United States to tour the city’s landmarks. The purpose of the Youth Tour is to educate the students about our country and the rural electrification program in order to provide a better understanding of our form of government and the value of rural electric cooperatives.