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Youth Tour

White River Valley Electric Cooperative – serving Christian, Taney, Stone, Douglas and Ozark Counties – is sending three high school juniors on an all-expense paid, trip-of-a-lifetime, June 19-25, 2020 with 90 other juniors from across Missouri and hundreds from across the nation. Participants answered the following question:


“How will the cooperative power your future?”

2020 Youth Tour Winners

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have elected to cancel the banquet to ensure the safety of students, our employees, and the community. In lieu of the banquet, we are awarding the three highest scoring essays. Congratulations to the chosen 2020 representatives:

  • Erin McKinzie, Gainesville High School
  • Abigail Pride, Bradleyville High School
  • Hope Barker, Homeschooled from Spokane

Contest Details

Participants can choose to either write an essay or make a short film. Essays must be between 500-1,000 words and videos must be between 3-5 minutes. Entries will be judged on the basis of knowledge, independent thought, composition, grammar and professionalism.

Submissions can be made by filling out the application and attaching the essay or video answering the question, “How will the Cooperative power your future?” You may also mail or deliver a hard copy of your entries to your local WRVEC office. Hard copies must include a cover sheet with the following information: name, address, telephone number, guardians’ names, t-shirt size, school and sponsoring teacher’s name. Students’ names should only be listed on the cover sheet; do not put names or personal information on the essay itself.

One finalist from each participating school will attend a banquet with their family and sponsoring teacher where they will present their essay or video. Judges will select three winners whose names will be announced after the competition that evening.

Fine print
– All high school juniors who attend a school in the WRVEC service area are eligible to enter. Your family does not need to be a member of the co-op.
– Home-schooled students between 16-17 years of age at a junior equivalent level are eligible.
– All hard-copy submissions will not be returned.
– The decision of the judges is final.



The Youth Tour program is deeply rooted in history, starting in 1957 when Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson addressed the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) at Annual Meeting in Chicago. The Senator declared, “If one thing goes out of this meeting, it will be sending youngsters to the national capital where they can actually see what the flag stands for and represents.”

Since then, the Annual Youth tour program has grown into a hallmark event for the communities co-ops serve across the country.