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Two high school students whose families are Midwest Energy & Communications (MEC) members explored Washington, D.C. June 9 – 14, 2018 as delegates of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) Youth Tour.

Leah Eaton, daughter of Marnie and Eric Eaton and junior at Edwardsburg High School, and Logan Smith, son of Jodee Smith and junior at Decatur High School, joined approximately 1,800 students representing electric cooperatives from all over the United States for this annual event. The students were selected based on their applications and after spending a day with MEC employees at the Cassopolis headquarters where they toured the building, learned about the industry and  discussed potential careers.

“We believe every kid should have the opportunity to visit our capital to meet our representatives and build an emotional connection to our history and democracy,” said Patty Nowlin, vice president of corporate communications at MEC. “We are glad to give two promising youth this very opportunity and to show them our business and what goes into keeping the lights on.”

As part of the Michigan delegation, Eaton and Smith toured the Civil War battlegrounds in Gettysburg, PA and Fort McHenry in Baltimore, MD on their way to D.C. Once in the capital, they visited several monuments and museums, witnessed the changing of the guard ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery and met with local representatives on Capitol Hill. To round out the week’s activities, they also attended a Broadway show and a Washington Nationals baseball game.