Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association on Dec. 28, 2021, announced Lauren Thompson of St. Croix Electric Cooperative took third place and earned a $250 scholarship in WECA’s 2021 essay contest, open to students who attended the Youth Leadership Congress (YLC). Students were asked to write an essay about how electric cooperatives benefit local communities beyond providing electricity.
Lauren’s essay "Electric Cooperatives: Investing in our Community" focuses on how her rural Woodville family “has benefited directly from the presence of St. Croix Electric Cooperative in our community.” It can be found online through WECA's “WHAT’S NEW” page.
Lauren first attended YLC as an incoming high school junior in the summer of 2019, when she was elected to the Youth Board tasked to plan the next year’s event. The 2020 YLC was canceled and 2021 was held virtually, and Lauren, a 2021 graduate of Baldwin-Woodville High School, will be sponsored by SCEC on the national Electric Cooperative Youth Tour to Washington D.C. in June 2022.
Lauren was also the recipient of a 2021 SCEC Co-op Principles Scholarship and the Willink Cooperative Leadership Scholarship in 2021. She is currently a freshman at Kansas State University pursuing a degree in Animal Science and Leadership Studies. Lauren is the daughter of SCEC members Kirstin & Scott Thompson of Woodville.