Bianca Stewart once dreamed of becoming a doctor.
But a summer camp at Atlanta-based CNN changed her mind.
Now, the 17-year-old Grovetown High senior one day wants to become a journalist doctor.
Bianca attended the camp, called "Leadership Unplugged: A CNN Experience," for six days in June and the experience made a lasting impression.
"After being there, I not only want to be a doctor, but I also want to be a news correspondent for a major news network," she said. "It showed me that I have a passion for journalism."
The camp was a joint venture between Turner Broadcasting System, CNN Worldwide and 21st Century Leaders, which is a Georgia-based nonprofit group that works to develop leadership skills in teens.
The camp played host to 100 rising juniors and seniors in Georgia and gave them the opportunity to meet CNN executives and reporters while attending seminars on such topics as the effect of social networking on the news media, media ethics and audience engagement.
Following in the footsteps of CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Bianca hopes to one day report on medical issues affecting her audience.
"Through the media, you can reach a wide variety of people," she said. "I want to be a doctor, because I want to help people, and through journalism, I can help that many more."
Bianca's 21st Century Leaders experience didn't end with the summer camp.
Before school started, she was invited to apply for the organization's 20-member Youth Advisory Board.
"We raise awareness to schools about the program," Bianca said of her responsibilities on the Youth Advisory Board. "We help out with different events during the year and get to network with different people in journalism and things like that."
Because the group's time with students is limited during the school year, Prissy Stewart -- no relation to Bianca -- program manager for the Leadership Unplugged camp, said 21st Century Leaders relies on the advice from the teen board.
"They are very helpful to us," Prissy Stewart said. "They give us a youth voice. ... They help us make decisions about our events during the school year and lead workshops at some of our events."
Also, Stewart said she relies on the Youth Advisory Board to help with fundraisers and plug the camp to their schoolmates and friends.
Bianca is unsure of where she will attend college, but said she is searching for a school with strong pre-medicine and broadcast journalism programs. In the short term, she intends to study video broadcasting in her second semester at Grovetown High.
"One of the key things I learned was how diversity drives innovation," Bianca said of the CNN camp. "You really need to surround yourself with people that aren't just like you to grow."
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