Students invited to apply for trip to Washington, D.C.


By Lonnie Tucker

Special to The SUN

La Plata Electric Association Inc. (LPEA), in partnership with the Colorado Rural Electric Association (CREA), seeks high school juniors to participate as part of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s (NRECA) 2020 National Youth Tour Conference in Washington, D.C., set for June 17-25, 2020.

“As someone who worked for a U.S. senator in Congress, this is an excellent opportunity for high-school juniors to experience the nation’s capital,” said LPEA CEO Jessica Matlock. “Annually, LPEA and our statewide cooperatives select and sponsor high school juniors for this all-expenses paid experience. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by.”

The youth tour allows students to experience the nation’s capital and learn more about how they can make a difference as young adults. Students will learn about the cooperative business model and values, visit historic monuments and memorials, pay their respects at Arlington National Cemetery, tour a variety of Smithsonian museums and meet elected officials, all while building a peer network with young leaders from across the country.

LPEA will sponsor five local students to join the Colorado Youth Tour delegation during the weeklong tour in Washington, D.C. More than 1,900 students from 45 states are expected to participate in 2020, and Colorado’s electric cooperatives will send a delegation of about 45 students.

“If you’re a high school student who wants to grow as a leader, the youth tour is the perfect opportunity to build your skills, gain new experiences and form valuable relationships with others,” said LPEA Communications Coordinator Lonnie Tucker. “Youth tour has something to offer to everyone and can help prepare you for future success on any path you pursue after high school.”

To be considered, students must complete a 2020 Youth Tour application and submit it to LPEA, along with a 500- to 1,000-word composition addressing the topic “My Favorite Cooperative Principle.”

Applications are available on the LPEA website, The deadline is Dec. 20 at 5 p.m. For additional information, contact Lonnie Tucker at 382-3511 or