Emily Belchyk will be one of three youngsters from Georgia to attend the People to People World Leadership Forum in Washington as a student ambassador.
"I feel very confident that this is going to help me in the future," the Columbia Middle School eighth-grader said about the conference, which will be held in April.
During the weeklong forum, Emily will gather with students from throughout the United States to learn more about the federal government and visit monuments, memorials and museums in the nation's capital.
Begun in 1956 by then-President Eisenhower to "promote international friendship and understanding, the program has provided more than 120,000 young Americans with the opportunity to venture into the world," according to the People to People Student Ambassador Web site.
In Washington, Emily will visit the Supreme Court and Library of Congress, tour the Holocaust Memorial Museum and National Mall Monuments and Memorials and visit Arlington National Cemetery. On the fourth day of her visit, she will visit Gettysburg, Pa., and the Eisenhower Farm.
The last few days of her trip, Emily will participate in a half-day service project and go to the White House Visitors Center, Fords Theater and International Spy Museum. She also will participate in an embassy reception and visit the Smithsonian Museums - American History, Natural History, National Sculpture Garden/Gallery of Art, Air and Space and Hirschhorn.
Though Emily will participate in a domestic program, other students will take part in international travels to countries such as China, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
"Emily is a wonderful and well-rounded student," said Missy Dorn, Emily's Language Arts teacher at Columbia Middle. She also nominated Emily to the student ambassador program. "Emily is very dependable. She is also respected by her peers, and she is never hesitant to help her fellow classmates."
Whether it's in the classroom or on the playing field, Emily strives to help others. She was a cheerleader at Columbia Middle for two years, a member of the school's track team for three years and plays soccer at school.
A soccer enthusiast since she was 5, Emily also plays on Evans High School's junior varsity soccer team and is a member of the Augusta Arsenal Soccer Club.
"I like all outdoor sports," said Emily, the daughter of Max and Teresa Emily of Martinez.
She said she aspires to "get a soccer scholarship to a real good soccer school and then go to law school at Harvard."
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