Hardy To Select Students For D.C. Trip

Hardy Telecommunications will send two local students on a trip to our nation’s capital, giving them the chance to see our country’s historic sites and meet peers from all over the United States.

One junior each from Moorefield and East Hardy high schools will be selected to attend the 2012 Foundation for Rural Service Youth Tour in Washington, D.C., June 2-6.  The trip includes sightseeing as well as educational sessions to teach today’s youth about the telecommunications industry.  Hardy Telecommunications will pay all basic expenses, including travel.

East Hardy High Senior Chelsea Wilson (left) and Moorefield High Senior Tori Burdette pose with W.Va. Democratic Senators John D. Rockefeller IV and Joe Manchin during the 2011 FRS Youth Tour.

The Youth Tour provides students from rural areas with a first-hand look at the telecommunications industry and educates students about the legislative and governmental processes.  Students will visit the U.S. Capitol Building and hear presentations from representatives of Capitol Hill and the Federal Communications Commission.  All of the students are sponsored by rural telecommunications companies like Hardy Telecommunications.

East Hardy High Senior Chelsea Wilson and Moorefield High Senior Tori Burdette participated in the 2011 Youth Tour.  The students were able to meet both U.S. Senators from West Virginia, John D. Rockefeller IV and Joe Manchin.

““Using one word to describe my experience at D.C. would be `amazement,’” Tori wrote after the tour.  “… For me, this was as if I had won the lottery. … Most importantly, this experience will help me grow as a person.”

Chelsea said she valued the chance to meet students from different parts of the country.

“The friendships made will last a lifetime,” she said.  “I am so glad I was able to participate in this experience.”

This year’s preliminary agenda includes visits to the U.S. Capitol, the Lincoln Memorial, the World War II Memorial, Mount Vernon (home of George Washington), the Vietnam War Memorial, the Smithsonian Museums, the Korean War Memorial, the National Zoo, the National Cathedral, and Arlington National Cemetery.  A night tour of Washington and special entertainment are also planned, including a dance the final night complete with professional DJ.

Hardy Marketing and Human Resource Director Derek Barr said the students have visited their state congressional representatives in the past couple of years to stress the importance of rural telecommunications issues.

“The students are concrete examples of the need to expand and maintain affordable telephone and high-speed internet networks in rural America,” he said.  “During last year’s tour we were lucky enough to spend time with both Senator Rockefeller and Senator Manchin.  It was a great experience for Chelsea and Tori.”

Because of the widespread interest in the tour from students around the country, Hardy can only sponsor one student from Moorefield High and one from East Hardy High.  Applications for the tour may be picked up from the guidance counselors at both high schools or by contacting Derek at Hardy’s Lost River Office, telephone 304-897-9911.  To be eligible for the trip, students must be high school juniors of the 2013 graduating class and be either 16 or 17 years old at the time of the tour.  Students must also receive service from either Hardy Telecommunications or HardyNet.

The deadline to return applications is February 10, 2012.  Applications may be returned to either the high school guidance counselors or directly to Derek Barr, Marketing/Human Resource Director, Hardy Telecommunications, 2255 Kimseys Run Road, Lost River, WV  26810.

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