An Indian Land high school student won $5,000 in an audio podcast scholarship competition sponsored by South Carolina’s electric cooperatives. Felix Gonzalez of Indian Land (York Electric Cooperative) joined Leah Gardner of Bennettsville (Lynches River Electric Cooperative), Roshni Nandwani of Myrtle Beach (Horry Electric Cooperative) and Peyton Rollins of Woodruff (Laurens Electric Cooperative) in creating the winning podcast. Each competition winner receives $5,000.
Seventy-four high school students from across South Carolina competed in the competition. All were participants in the Virtual Youth Experience earlier this summer.
During the virtual experience, the students heard from state leaders including Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette, R-S.C., U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Tim Scott, R-S.C., S.C. State Epidemiologist Linda Bell and Chris Singleton, whose mother, Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, was one of nine killed in 2015’s Emanuel AME Church shooting. Using interviews from those leaders, the students then worked in groups to create audio podcasts that that completed the sentence: This is my country…
The winning group was selected by a panel of journalists that included Cindi Scoppe of The Post and Courier newspaper, Kenneth Moton of ABC News, Dawndy Mercer Plank of WIS News, Ben Hoover of WSPA and Lucas McFadden of CN2 News.
In addition to the $5,000 winners, eight other students from across the state are each receiving $500 as finalists in the competition. The eight $500 winners are:
- Amy Crumley of Pinopolis (Berkeley Electric Cooperative)
- Carsen Grice of Aiken (Aiken Electric Cooperative)
- Aanem Hasnie of Greer (Laurens Electric Cooperative)
- Taylor Hollis of Winnsboro (Fairfield Electric Cooperative)
- Maggie Nolen of Piedmont (Blue Ridge Electric Cooperative)
- Ayoola Oladimeji of Goose Creek (Berkeley Electric Cooperative)
- Josh Sharpe of Sumter (Black River Electric Cooperative)
- John Sumter of Myrtle Beach (Horry Electric Cooperative)
Five students won $250 after receiving honorable mention. The five $250 winners are:
- Laney Brown of Conway (Horry Electric Cooperative)
- Rori Mae Condon of Goose Creek (Berkeley Electric Cooperative)
- Adrian Hayden of Summerville (Berkeley Electric Cooperative)
- Asheton Holden of Inman (Laurens Electric Cooperative)
- Katherine Morton of Summerville (Berkeley Electric Cooperative)