Petal student Brown excels in Dixie Electric program

By HASKEL BURNS,

 It’s not hard to see why Petal High School junior Lorin Brown is considered a leader among her peers, with roles such as president of the 11th grade student council, Petal Ambassador, member of Spanish Club at the National Society of High School Scholars, and section leader in the Petal High marching band.

It’s those types of credentials that made Brown one of two winners – along with Courtney Lee from Northeast Jones High School – of Dixie Electric Power Association’s Youth Leadership Program, which will allow the two students to represent the cooperative at upcoming leadership events in Jackson and Washington, D.C.

“I feel very excited, and glad to get such a great opportunity to be able to represent my school,” Brown said. “I’m actually very committed and determined to keep going and doing things like this, because I feel like once you start, you shouldn’t stop. You should continue and strive for excellence.”

The award process started with a day-long informational program from Dixie Electric, after which Brown was chosen for an interview. During the interview, officials asked what activities she was involved in, her greatest achievement and her passions.

“So I just told them how passionate I was about motivating and inspiring others,” said Brown, who aspires to be a neurosurgeon. “I care about the welfare of others. I love taking care of people, and making sure that people are okay and making them feel like (others) have interest in them. I care about them.”

Brown and Lee, along with about 80 other students representing cooperatives around the state, will go to Jackson for three days at the end of February for the Youth Leadership Seminar. While in Jackson, students will get to meet Legislators, visit the United States Capitol building, hear from Gov. Phil Bryant and take place in leadership games and activities.

Awards and scholarships will be given out during the last day of the trip, which is fully paid for by Dixie Electric.

That will be followed by another all-expense-paid trip to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Youth Tour in Washington, D.C., which will take place in June.

Dixie Electric also featured Brown in an article in this month’s edition of Today in Mississippi.

“The first day (of the informational program), Lorin stood out,” said Pollyanna Magee, community relations coordinator at Dixie Electric. ”She asked a lot of questions, she seemed to be a great leader and the students really picked up on her being a great leader.

“So for the interview, we want to get to know the kids and who fits best with this program, and we just think that she would represent Dixie Electric the best out of everybody.”

Brown credits her community involvement to her grandmother, who passed away when Brown was 7 years old.

“She was always such a caregiver for everyone – she always cared for people,” Brown said. “I feel like I’ve (gotten) that from her, and I just love helping others and making people feel good.

“I like changing our world by changing what happens around me first, and I feel like that’s what I’m doing. I see what’s happening now in our world, and I just want to be able to make a change. Even if it’s a small change, it can make a difference.”