A potato bake will be held Monday, March 10th at the Pawhuska Elks Lodge for Sophomore PHS student Genie Herren. The event will kick off at 5:30 p.m. and continue until 7:30 p.m. Cost is an $8 donation. All proceeds will help Herren defray tuition expenses associated with her upcoming trip to Europe as a student ambassador of the People-to-People program.
According to co-event organizer, Laura Glentzer, "Elk members have graciously donated the food and their time so that all contributions that evening can go directly to Genie. She is an incredible young woman who participates in many extracurricular activities (Student Council, Key Club, soccer, and basketball) while maintaining a straight ‘A’ average!"
Genie Herren is the 16-year old daughter of Chet and Sylvia Herren. She was nominated for this prestigious opportunity by one of her high school teachers. After attending an orientation session, Herren was required to submit three letters of recommendation. Two of the letters were to be from high school teachers and one from a civic leader for her community-service work. She also had to complete a questionnaire and a one-hour interview.
When Herren received her acceptance letter last September, she discovered she was one of 40 students out of 150 nominations to receive this honor. In June, she will join a group of 30 to 40 students for her European adventure to Greece, Sicily, Italy and Rome.
In addition to attending various outdoor and educational events, Herren can earn college and high school credit for classes through the People-to-People operated Washington School of World Studies as well as Eastern Washington University. She said, "I have coursework that must be completed before, during, as well as after the trip in order to receive high school credit. I also have to raise a little over $7,300 in tuition."
Herren said she has been doing odd jobs to help raise monies for her trip and recently made a guest appearance at the Rotary Club where she explained the concept of the People-to-People Student Ambassador program.
Since President Dwight D. Eisenhower founded the People to People initiative in 1956, nearly half a million students, adults and athletes have participated in the event. Countries visited include Germany, France, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Denmark, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Italy, Greece, Fiji, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom and Russia.
Herren said, "This program will help give me a better cultural understanding as well as giving my education a perspective that reading from a book cannot provide. The People-to-People Student Ambassador program strives to bridge gaps between cultures to help maintain a civilized way of life."