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July 16, 2013 > Local student named Running Start scholarship winner

Local student named Running Start scholarship winner

Submitted By Tamar Sarkissian

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and Washington D.C.-based nonprofit Running Start announced July 9, 2013 that they awarded three high school girls from the Bay Area scholarships to attend Running Start's Young Women's Political Summit in Washington, D.C. July 12-14. The scholarship winners, who attended Running Start's Young Women's Political Leadership program (YWPL) in Los Angeles on February 9, now have the opportunity to join 300 young women, ages 14-35, from around the country in a Summit for young women who want to run for public office, hone their leadership skills and strengthen their connections in the political world - all expenses paid.

Winners are Kelsey Wong of Fremont, Getssiva Giselle Hernandez of East Palo Alto and Tatiana Wallace of East Palo Alto. Scholarships were awarded based upon need and cover costs for travel, room and board, and conference registration fees for each awardee. In addition, a chaperone will help scholarship winners navigate the conference. While in Washington, D.C., scholarship winners will also have the opportunity to meet with their Congressional Representatives.

Kelsey Wong is a junior at Irvington High School in Alameda. Ms. Wong wishes to pursue leadership development in order to have the power to make positive change in her community. If given the chance to change one thing in her community, Ms. Wong would put an end to sex trafficking. She wants to inform people about the issue and provide ways for them to aid in combating it.

"As a former educator and Chair Emeritus of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, I am particularly excited about the partnership of Running Start and PG&E to send Kelsey Wong, a deserving scholarship winner from my district, to the Young Women's Political Summit in Washington, D.C.," said Rep. Mike Honda (D-San Jose). "Public-private scholarships such as this serve as a true model of how to empower high-school students as they strive to establish their careers and serve their community in politics."

"These scholarship winners are young political leaders in their own right, who have done incredible things to help others, and we have given each of them the benefit of Running Start's Young Women's Political Summit to help them do more," said Jessica Hogle, Director of Federal Affairs for PG&E and Running Start board member. "By supporting these deserving high school girls, we can help them realize their full potential."

The program will provide attendees with skills training - from personal branding and social media, to fundraising and campaigning 101. Speakers and moderators at the Summit include members of Congress, young candidates and political operatives from the top of their field.

Running Start is a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to educating young women about politics and inspiring them to run for elected office. Running Start was created because young women remain only a tiny fraction of the elected officials and candidates for public office. We talk to young women about politics and leadership early in their lives, so that they grow up inspired and ready to run! Running Start trains the young women who will shape tomorrow's world. For more information or to apply to our programs, go to

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