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Adkisson: Leaving it better than you found it

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Teen of The Week Class of 2017 Reception

Sentinel Publisher Gary Adkisson speaks during the Teen of the Week Class of 2017 reception at Carlisle Regional Medical Center.

I said last week that one of the best things about my job is getting to know community leaders and visiting operations such as Ames and the Allenberry.

But hands down, the best thing I get to do each year is participate in our annual celebration of the outstanding youth in our area.

Our weekly feature Teen of the Week culminates in an annual selection of the Teen of the Year. The 2017 winner is Holden Zimmerman, a Cumberland Valley High School senior.

Our program is sponsored by Carlisle Regional Medical Center, and given that about a third or this year’s 32 weekly winners aspire to a career in medicine, it is a nice fit.

But the fact is, the reason The Sentinel and CRMC invest in this program is that no matter what occupations these young people pursue, we want to encourage them to come home when they complete their education, as most will attend college out of the area.

Lydia Estes, our 2016 winner, nailed it when she spoke to the 2017 class at our banquet Monday night. Estes said that even in her first year away at college she realized how important it is to come from a place where she feels loved and valued, and not just by her family and friends, but by a community that celebrates her accomplishments.

To the extent the local newspaper and hospital can help foster that connection and help root their identity in this place, we have succeeded in a critical part of our shared mission and vision for this community.

I encourage you to go back and read the stories about these amazing teens. Subscribers to the Sentinel can access them digitally through this link: http://cumberlink.com/news/local/teen_of_the_week/teen_of_the_week_2016-17/

Their stories inspire confidence that the next generation of leaders is not only capable, but likely leave it better than they found it.

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