We have our candidates for our 2020 Youth of the Year and Junior Youth of the Year, all hailing from our various Club locations! They are preparing for the competition and ceremony on February 27th, practicing their speeches and interview skills with support from their family, friends, Clubs, and mentors. At the ceremony, we will announce the Youth of the Year candidate (aged 14-18) elected to represent the Union League Boys & Girls Clubs at the regional Boys & Girls Clubs of America competition as well as the winner of our Junior Youth of Year award (for candidates 10-13).
The Youth of the Year Award is the highest honor Boys & Girls Clubs Members can receive. It recognized academic performance, and service to Club, community, and family. We have already held two Youth of the Year Meet and Greet events for our candidates to get to know one another and to provide additional prep time for the big day.
We are incredibly proud of these remarkable Club members and the achievements they made. It is with great pleasure that we introduce you to them! Read our candidates’ bios below and get to know a little about them and their experiences at our Clubs.
Our 2020 Youth of the Year Candidates
Giselle, a high school Senior, has been a member at our Clemente Club for the last four years. She has participated in girls Varsity soccer team (serving as team captain for two years), Power Hour, Island Sails participant, and Career Launch. Giselle hopes to attend Robert Morris University to study Business and loves to volunteer with our Club – through which, she accumulated over 125 service hours. In her spare time, she enjoys listening to BTS (a KPop Band), hosting events, and playing soccer with her friends.
Samantha, a high school Senior, has been a member at our Club One for the past three years. She is the President of Club One’s Keystone Club, and has logged over 1,000 hours of community service – mostly through Club One. Samantha takes college level classes through dual enrollment in partnership with her local community college, and is a member of the National Honors Society. She has been accepted to three major Universities and plans to enroll in one to start this fall. She aspires to be a NICU nurse and a youth development professional to mentor those with similar or more difficult upbringings than her own.
Tiana, a high school Senior, has been a member at our Barreto Club for the last eleven years. Throughout her time as a member, she participated in many programs including Power Hour, Smart Girls, Science Club, Torch Club, etiquette classes, and Keystone. She also worked at our Union League Boys & Girls Clubs Camp in Wisconsin as a Counselor in Training and a Leader in Training. She has many hobbies, but her favorites are photography and sports. She has accumulated 150 service hours to date and dreams of pursuing a career in law.
Zeek, a Senior in high school, has been a member at our Club Two for the past four years. During this time, Zeek has participated in Power Hour, Know Peace (as an organizer for the Know Peace Festival), Social Soldiers, and as a Camp Counselor (leading the 1st and 2nd graders for 2 years), and Freshman Connection Mentor. Zeek loves makeup as a means to show creativity and expressiveness, and performance as it affords opportunities to set personal challenges. Zeek endeavors to became a professional actor – a passion that stems back to childhood – and to one day start a family.
Our Junior Youth of the Year Candidates
Aiden, a 6th grader, has been a member of our Club One for over two years. At school, he is heavily involved in Student Council and tutoring his peers in math and reading. At the Club, Aiden participates in programs such as Google CS First, Seaperch, Torch Club, and Flag Football. He hopes to be a role model for his younger brother the same way Club One staff, athletes, and Kevin Hart are role models to him. He aspires to be an actor.
Jacorian, an 8th grader, has been a member of our Nicholson Club for two years. He enjoys playing basketball, as well as drawing Anime characters and scenes. His ambitions include obtaining a college degree, and pursuing a career as either a basketball player or nurse – with a master’s degree in the medical field.
Joel, an 8th grader, has been a member of our Hammond Club for two years. He participates in the Teen Reach, PowerHour, and sports programs at the Club. Joel enjoys playing basketball and computer games, listening to music, and looking at new sneakers. Joel’s strives to attend a good high school and eventually get a job in paleontology.
Kaitlyn, an 8th grader, has been a member at our Club Two for four years. At the Club, Kaitlyn has participates in Power Hour, Smart Girls and Torch Club. She is the first to volunteer to help staff and has secured a position as Jr Staff. She is a good influence and maintains positive relationships with her peers. She plans to pursue a career as either a Scientist or Gymnast.
Leyah, a 5th grader, has been a member at our Wentworth Club for three years. At the Club, Leyah enjoys dancing, and making people laugh and smile. She values being true to herself and pursuing the things that make her truly happy. Her ambitions include becoming a professional actress and/or model, and to launch her own business.
Ozell, an eighth grader, has been a member of our Stagg Club for over two years. He loves to sing, perform in front of crowds, and learning new music. He also enjoys going to school and receiving his education. He strives to become a famous singer, but the goals he believes to be most important is to be the best person he can possibly be and to be a great father one day.
Savannah, an eighth grader, has been a member of our Barreto Club for eight years. She participates in Power Hour, Smart Girls, Barreto’s dance program, Passport to Womanhood, UPS Road Code, and Keystone. Savannah loves to sing and dance, and has accumulated 100 service hours. Savannah endeavors to be a world-renowned chef, through which, she hopes she helps young girls feel empowered in their own right.