Cincinnati, OH, February 2018 – Earlier this month at Great American Ball Park, five outstanding teens competed for a $20,000 college Scholarship award and the title “2018 Youth of the Year” from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati (BGCGC). These five kids have overcome challenges that many do not experience in a lifetime – making their accomplishments even more impressive. The Youth of the Year competition features Club kids who have met personal challenges head-on and despite the odds, have given back to their Club and community. The Youth of the Year winners are chosen based on their demonstration of service to Club, community and family; academic success; strong moral character; life goals; and public speaking ability. These high achievers personify the values and character of their home Club.
Kamara Cobb, a Senior at Western Hills High School, representing the Sheakley Club in Price Hill was chosen as the 2018 Youth of the Year for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati. “Life has thrown me many lemons, but it’s important to remember that when life throws you lemons to make lemonade, and thanks to Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati I am making a huge pitcher of lemonade” Kamara shared. Through a partnership with BGCGC Kamara is currently enrolled in the Journey Steel Program, working at Journey Steel Fabrication Company as the only female pre-apprentice, learning the trade of welding. Kamara plans to continue working at Journey Steel, while also attending college in the Fall, with aspirations to one day become a professional Welder. Kamara will receive a $20,000 scholarship from Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati as recognition of her hard work and triumph in the Youth of the Year Competition.
“Kamara is one of the brightest, most determined of all our BGC members. She overcame some long odds to enter our Journey Soaring Impact program, where she’ll become a journeyman ironworker upon graduating from high school,” said Bill Bresser, Interim President of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati. “Kamara is an example to the thousands of youth we serve, and she exemplifies our Graduate, Fit for Life, Ready to Serve program. All of us at BGCGC are proud to have Kamara represent us as our 2018 Youth of the Year!”
Kamara competed against four other exemplary Youth of the Year finalists:
·Qwadry-Ishmael Kelsey, who was chosen as the 2018 Runner-up, is a Junior at Shroder High School from the U.S. Bank Boys & Girls Club. Qwadry plans to get his degree in either Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering. Qwadry has been attending the Club for 9 years.
·Kenya Bohannon, is a Senior at Cincinnati College Preparatory Academy attending the Findlay Street Boys & Girls Club in the West End. Kenya’s future plans include attending college & receiving her doctoral degree to one day become a psychologist or dentist. Kenya has been attending the Club for 8 years.
·Ruth Tvrdy, is a Freshman at New Richmond High School attending the Robert Williams Club in New Richmond. Ruth plans to one day become a Veterinarian.
·Rickey Steed, is a Senior at Holy Cross High School attending the Marge Schott-Unnewehr Club in Covington, Kentucky. Ricky plans to attend Mount St. Joseph University and become a History teacher.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Cincinnati is extremely proud of all our kids as they continue to exemplify the core values and beliefs of our mission.
“Youth of the Year is a Boys & Girls Clubs national program and is the highest honor we give to a member,” Bresser said. “The teens who win this award represent the thousands of youth who come through our doors each day as a shining example of success amid challenging circumstances.”
We are extremely grateful to our sponsors; Disney, who is the national sponsor for the Youth of the Year, the Cincinnati Reds, Toyota, Taco Bell and our special friends at Toastmasters International for their support of this year’s Youth of the Year competition.