ICUA Youth Rally Leadership Camp: A Life Changing Event

Kodiak High School students Alicia Kostelecky and Joseph Beltran attended the 2014 Idaho Consumer-Owned Utility Association (ICUA) Youth Rally Leadership Camp at the College of Idaho in Caldwell July 7-12.  The pair won scholarships this spring from KEA through the initial application and interview process to attend the event, and discussed their trip with the KEA Board of Directors on July 24.

“It changed my life,” said Alicia during her presentation.  “It gave me the opportunity to step off of my rock and out of my comfort zone, and into a whole new unfamiliar world.”

For over twenty years, a small group of electric cooperatives in Alaska have participated in the Youth Rally.  This was the first year for KEA to participate.  The 2014 Youth Rally attracted 92 sophomore and junior participants from six states – Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming. There were seven students from Alaska.  The schedule was jam packed down to the second, with educational sessions, motivational speakers, and challenging games and fun activities to strengthen communication and leadership abilities and to increase knowledge of the electric utility industry.  The students learned about electric cooperatives and why they were formed during the Rural Electrification Program.

Joseph agreed that it had been a wonderful experience.  “I had a great time, met a lot of people, and learned a lot.  My favorite three hours was playing a game that gave us good insight into the political sphere in Washington, D.C.”  While attending the Rally, students were interviewed and observed for participation and leadership qualities, and Joseph received a $500 scholarship.

The KEA Board of Directors complimented Alicia and Joseph for representing KEA and Alaska so well at the Rally, and has invited them to make a presentation at KEA’s Annual Membership Meeting next April.

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