Moorefield High senior Hannah Weatherholt and East Hardy High senior Clayton Strawderman both thanked Hardy Telecommunications for their recent experience on the Foundation for Rural Service Youth Tour in Washington, D.C.
“I visited many places I had never been, such as the Holocaust Museum and the Washington National Cathedral, all of which I found interesting. I met many students my age from all over the nation and am now friends with two people from Oregon, as well as others that I would never have met had it not been for this Youth Tour,” Hannah said.
Clayton also enjoyed the many historic sites.
“I also learned lots about the city, the buildings, and the history of the area. I enjoyed seeing and visiting the buildings and learning about their design – such as the iron in the capitol dome and its size. We visited many places of historic value. We went to the National Mall and lots of museums. We visited the Lincoln Memorial and took a night tour of Washington, D.C. On the night tour, I saw the city from a different perspective,” he said.
The pair, sponsored by Hardy, spent June 3-7 in D.C. for the tour. More than 100 students from across the country went sightseeing, visited the Federal Communications Commission and learned about the rural telecommunications industry. Hardy Telecommunications paid all expenses in sponsoring the Hardy County students.
“Many things accessible to people who live in suburban areas are not accessible to those of us who live in rural areas, such as speedy internet and the newest medical technologies. Many men and women are working hard to make those things accessible to everyone, rural and suburban,” Hannah said.
Clayton said he valued learning about the industry from the legislative and regulatory perspective.
“The information learned about legislation and regulations for communications was also beneficial,” he said.
Hannah said the interaction with peers from around the country had a profound impact on her.
“My favorite part was meeting everyone. I could relate with every student there. I truly felt like I wasn’t alone and that banded together, we could do great things,” she said.
Both students said they recommend that other students apply for the Youth Tour in the future.
“I am very grateful to have had this experience,” Clayton said.
Added Hannah: “Thank you for allowing me to go on this Youth Tour, and I hope many others may enjoy this wonderful experience in the future.”