Ferriday High student awarded trip to Washington

Published 12:18 am Thursday, May 15, 2008

FERRIDAY — The nation’s leadership starts in Washington, D.C., and one local teen is headed there to learn more about leading.

Ferriday High School sophomore Amanda Moreno, 15, will be going to the capitol city as part of the national Young Academic Leaders Conference July 19-28.

At the 10-day, 10-night conference, Moreno will study the three branches of government with students from across the nation.

Email newsletter signup

“The part of the conference I am looking forward to the most is the model congress, because it gets to act out the roles of congressional members,” Moreno said.

Other sessions will include “Testing the Constitution,” in which students examine Supreme Court cases, and “If I were president,” in which the participant gives a speech detailing just that — what they would do if they were president.

And for Moreno, that’s probably the hardest part of being president.

“It’s hard to think of realistic things,” she said. “I’d probably try to think of something to stimulate the economy, maybe to help bring gas prices down.”

To get into the program, a student has to be nominated — Moreno was nominated by Ferriday High Vice-Principal Derrick White — and pass the committee’s admittance board.

But it might not be so hard to see how she passed.

With a 3.9 grade point average and an “advanced” rating on the Graduate Exit Exam’s math portion, Moreno is in the gifted and talented program, the 4-H club, Beta Club, Future Business Leaders of America, Library Club and volunteers at the Delta Storefront Mission.

Moreno’s mother, Bonnie Moreno, said she is proud of her daughter.

“To get a young teenager that is trying to do right is pretty good,” Bonnie said. “She is very gifted and talented, and she deserves the opportunity to go. I think it will be a wonderful experience for her.”

Right now, the biggest hurdle is money, and in the months to come Amanda will have fundraisers as well as look for corporate sponsors, Bonnie said.

The Morenos have also set up a bank account at Delta Bank for anyone who might want to give a donation to help Amanda.

When school ends, Amanda plans to start work selling sweet corn for a local producer.

“I’m really excited to go,” she said. “I can’t wait.”