Nick Hahn of Amery was selected as Polk-Burnett Electric Cooperative’s 2021 delegate for the electric co-op Youth Tour of Washington, D.C.
Hahn will join more than 1,500 high school students from co-ops across the country to learn about cooperatives, the rural electric program, U.S. history, government and democracy. They will meet with congressional leaders and tour Capitol Hill, national monuments, Arlington National Cemetery and the Smithsonian Museums. The tour has been deferred until next summer, June 19-24, 2022. It is hosted by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) and the Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association (WECA), with local sponsorship by Polk-Burnett Electric Cooperative.
To be selected as Polk-Burnett’s Youth Tour delegate, Hahn demonstrated community service and wrote essays about the value of electric co-ops in our community and why he wanted to represent his local co-op on the Youth Tour.
Hahn is a 2021 graduate of Amery High School and the son of co-op members Jeffrey and Heather Hahn. His application included community service at Worn Again and Operation Christmas Child. He also teaches Bible school and volunteers to play piano at local churches and a retirement home.
In his essay, Hahn wrote that he has “profound infatuation with American history… I would not consider myself educated enough to say I know everything there is to know about the forefathers and ancestors which we owe our modern day. I believe that a hands-on experience in the capital of American knowledge would be the most effective way to expand my understanding. To not only see the historic statues and monuments of our nation, but experience their vastness and stories firsthand. To walk through the memorials of our fallen victims of war instead of just reading about them in textbooks. I believe there is no greater educational privilege for an American citizen.”
About rural electric cooperatives, Hahn wrote that cooperatives, “help the community in ways that other organizations do not, such as focusing on services, communicating thoroughly with its members and effectively addressing the needs of the people….cooperatives are notably influential to economic development… cooperatives sustain themselves through the people in much more mutualistic way than most other types of business.”
“As a rural electric co-op, Polk-Burnett is pleased to support youth leadership opportunities for the children of our members, according to our cooperative principles,” said General Manager Steve Stroshane. “Postponing Youth Tour until next year is disappointing, but we want to be sure to Nick has a safe and rewarding experience when tours and D.C. sites open again.”
Polk-Burnett’s Youth Tour program does not affect electric rates; it is funded with unclaimed Capital Credits that if not used for education, would be forfeited to the state. Members may donate future Capital Credits to Polk-Burnett’s scholarship and Youth tour fund. For information, visit polkburnett.com or call 800-421-0283.