There may be no better example of the cooperative principles “Education, Training and Information” and “Commitment to Community” than the investment OEC makes in today’s youth. Each year the co-op hosts interactive workshops and camps to help young people gain leadership skills and knowledge that empowers them with the confidence to get involved in their schools and their communities. It’s an investment that will ensure a brighter future for all of us.
Perhaps OEC’s best-known and most anticipated youth program, Youth Tour is a week-long, all-expenses-paid educational trip to Washington, D.C. in June of each year. OEC annually sponsors four delegates—all juniors/soon-to-be seniors—from high schools within its service territory on Youth Tour. They travel with the Oklahoma delegation (about 60 students in all) to our nation’s capital where they tour historic sites and national landmarks and meet Oklahoma’s congressional delegation. Youth Tour has earned a reputation as “a trip of a lifetime” by former participants.
High school juniors can take part in the Youth Tour contest, a two-part essay and speech competition. To enter, students must write a 500- to 1,000-word essay on a given energy topic. Ten finalists attend a banquet where they give a speech on their paper. Independent community leaders–teachers, journalists and industry experts–serve as judges, grading the students on poise, content, delivery and a Q&A session.
The 2013 contest has commenced. For information regarding next year’s contest, please contact Brianna Wall (firstname.lastname@example.org or 217-6708).
Youth Power Energy Camp
A four-day action-packed adventure for eighth-graders, Energy Camp helps develop leadership skills and promotes teamwork while teaching about cooperative enterprises, the rural electrification program and electrical safety. Each year, OEC sponsors two students to the camp, which is held the end of May—usually the week after Memorial Day—at Canyon Camp, near Hinton, Okla.
While Energy Camp offers many traditional summer camp activities like swimming, hiking, basketball and a ropes course, teens also have the unique opportunity to climb a utility pole, ride in the basket of a bucket truck towering 50 to 60 feet, form their own Coke and Candy Co-op and watch a co-op crew at work. They’ll take home a new-found confidence and a host of new friends—like minded peers from all over Oklahoma.
Students currently enrolled in the eighth grade are eligible to compete for one of five spots at Energy Camp. To enter the contest, students must write a 200-word report on a given energy topic (see below). Call Brianna Wall at 405-217-6708 for more information or to have information sent to you as soon as it is available.