Youth awarded for positive impact

Placer, Colfax, Del Oro students win
By: Aurora Sain, Reporter
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Colfax High School, Placer High School and Del Oro High School all had award winners at the Placer County Youth Impact Awards on March 18.

The Placer County Youth Impact Awards started in the spring of 2015 and was designed as a platform to annually recognize the youth in Placer County for their hard work and contributions to their communities and schools.

“Today’s youth are strong leaders, innovators and dedicated volunteers who make a profound difference in their schools, communities and homes they reside in,” said Kory Annonio, health educator.

The awards celebration and ceremony brings awareness of the success and obstacles that the youth of today have endured and overcome. 

Placer High School senior Meridian Thompson won the “Overcoming Adversity” award which recognizes those who have overcome a significant challenge in life — a challenge that has contributed to who they are today.

She said that she overcame extreme anxiety and now, as a senior is doing better than ever before.

“It took a lot of work to beat my anxiety about school but it ultimately taught me that I can succeed at my goals, even the ones that seem impossible,” she said in her essay.

Del Oro student Kekoa Wong placed runner-up for applied talents and knowledge which recognizes those who have demonstrated the ability to share their knowledge and talents in a unique way. This could benefit either oneself or the community that one lives in.

For the Leadership award, Del Oro student Katherine Hanson won and Placer High School student Chessah Fox placed runner-up.

That award recognizes those who have performed outstanding acts of leadership and demonstrated the ability to direct, motivate, and lead others toward a common goal.

Colfax High School student Shawn Harris got an honorable mention for the overcoming adversity award.

Harris talked about overcoming a dangerous ski fall that left him with a concussion and bleeding in his brain. 

Honorable Mention in Leadership went to Cassandra Hinton from Del Oro High School and honorable mention in Community Service went to Samuel Frank from Del Oro High School.

Many people attended the event including Supervisor Jim Holmes, Sacramento District 5 Supervisor Don Nottoli, Placer County Children’s System of Care Director Dr. Twylla Abrahamson, keynote speakers and

Granite Bay High School graduates Assemblyman Kevin Kiley and congresswoman hopeful Regina Bateson.

The Placer County Youth Commission is a leadership group of motivated youth from all over Placer County. The goal of the PCYC is to improve Placer County by integrating youth voices into local policymaking to create positive change.

The winners of each category received a scholarship award of $300 and a plaque.