Pointe Coupee Electric selects 2017 Youth Tour winners

Staff Writer
Plaquemine Post South
Back row from left: PCEMC Board Members Irvin Settoon Sr. and Alton Smith Jr., Zoë Bertrand, Mary Claire Morel, Alex Langlois, PCEMC Board Member Peter Rumfola Jr., PCEMC General Manager Myron Lambert and Louisiana Generating President Jennifer Vosburg. Front from left: Robbi Seneca, MaKayla Lacy and Charlie Newchurch

Winners of the annual Youth Tour Essay Contest sponsored by PCEMC and Louisiana Generating, LLC a subsidiary of NRG Energy, Inc., were announced at a banquet held at the co-op’s office in New Roads on Feb. 21. 

Representing PCEMC and winning the all expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s (NRECA) Youth Tour Conference are Charlie Newchurch of Pointe Coupee Parish, MaKayla Lacy from West Baton Rouge Parish and Zoë Bertrand of Iberville Parish.

Louisiana Generating President Jennifer Vosburg was on hand to award three of the nine finalists the opportunity to represent NRG/Louisiana Generating on the Youth Tour. Those recipients were Alex Langlois of Pointe Coupee Parish, and Robbi Seneca and Mary Claire Morel of Iberville Parish.

Bertrand, Morel and Seneca attend St. John High School, Langlois attends Catholic High of Pointe Coupee, Newchurch attends False River Academy and Lacy attends Port Allen High School.

The other finalists who will serve as alternates if any of the six winners are unable to take part in the Youth Tour trip this summer are Michael-Anne Leachman and Amber Murphy of Port Allen High School and Stephen Fulmer of Catholic High of Pointe Coupee. (Acct. No. 1634202)

The contest finalists were selected from approximately 150 high school juniors from the tri-parish area served by Pointe Coupee Electric who were eligible to participate in a writing contest. 

The students submitted essays in the form of 500-word letters to any elected official on a topic of their own choosing. 

PCEMC board members Peter Rumfola Jr., Alton Smith Jr. and Irvin Settoon Sr. were on hand to hear the students’ oral presentations, and the three contest judges represented various industries and backgrounds from outside the tri-parish area.

The students were judged on their written essays (50 percent), interviews (30 percent) and oral presentations (20 percent).

PCEMC General Manager Myron Lambert served as emcee during the evening banquet, while Vosburg and Youth Tour Director Joni Kitchen also made brief presentations. 

The students will participate in a youth leadership summit in Baton Rouge on March 31, while the Youth Tour trip to Washington, D.C., will take place June 10-16. 

While in Washington, D.C., the students will join hundreds of other students from across the country to learn more about electric cooperatives, visit the various historic sites and monuments, attend social functions with their fellow delegates from across the country and receive leadership training.