On April 15, Living with Energy in Iowa magazine announced that Morgan Weber from East-Central Iowa REC was unanimously chosen by the judges as the winner of the magazine’s Youth Tour essay contest. Morgan wins an expenses-paid trip on the 2015 Youth Tour.
Living with Energy in Iowa magazine is published by the Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives (IAEC). The contest is open to current juniors whose parents or guardians are members of ECI REC or any of the other 33 IAEC member cooperatives.
Shelly York, IAEC’s Youth Tour coordinator, stated that Morgan has expressed great excitement about the opportunity. Morgan attends Jesup High School and is the daughter of Rachel and Chris Weber of Independence. As the sister of Dalton Schmit, one of ECI REC’s Youth Tour alumni from 2012, Morgan is very familiar with the Cooperative and the Youth Tour. Morgan and her essay (below) will be featured in the May edition of Living with Energy in Iowa magazine.
“Aside from providing quality, reliable, and affordable electric utilities, my electric cooperative has a strong impact on my community through their initiatives to support low-income community members, enhance economic development and community investment, and support education for students. My cooperative helps support low-income community members through RECare and Power Boost Gift Certificates. RECare helps low-income community members pay electric bills by sending resources directly to local community action agencies that distribute the assistance to those who need it most. Power Boost Gift Certificates allow anyone to help their friends or family afford their electric bills, especially during the most challenging times in the winter. My cooperative is a catalyst for rural economic development by making direct contributions to our community through the Community Reinvestment Fund and being a source for loans for private business, non-profit, and local governments that are taking on community and economic development projects through the Revolving Loan Fund. One of the most important ways that my cooperative helps our community is through education-related initiatives that span from teaching about safety, supporting ‘Character Counts,’ providing college-bound seniors with scholarships to help finance their education, and sending students to Washington on Youth Tour every year. Having directly seen the impact of these investments through my brother who attended Youth Tour in 2012, I know that my electric cooperative cares deeply about the young people in our community. My cooperative is heavily involved in building a strong community, and I am proud to be a part of it.”