Twelve teenagers from local high schools will compete in Humboldt County's Distinguished Young Woman scholarship program on Saturday, March 31 at the Winema Theater in Scotia. The program begins at 7 p.m. and the public is invited and encouraged to attend.

This year's contestants include Eureka High School students Felicia Yang, Sharmin Irfan, Sabeen Ahmed and GaoNue Hang; Ferndale High School students Kelsey Meyers and Tayler Torres; Fortuna High School students Walkyhr Macy, Clarissa Borges, Rachel Hess, Katelyn Pruett, Katrina Cahill and Danicia Slater.

The winner will be selected as the Distinguished Young Woman of Humboldt County and will go on to compete in the California Distinguished Young Woman program, an official preliminary of the America's Distinguished Young Woman scholarship program. This year the local participants will share in more than $5,000 of college scholarships. Eureka High School senior Ashley Russell and Fortuna High School senior Evelyn Beale had the honor of being our Distinguished Young Women and representing Humboldt County this past year at the state level.

The categories in which each contestant is evaluated are scholastics, interview skills, talent, fitness and self-expression. The program's goal is to honor young women who excel in all these areas and to encourage them to continue on the path of excellence by completing their college educations and assuming roles of leadership in their communities and professions; thereby becoming role models and setting examples for other young women to follow.


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Tickets are available in Fortuna at Gates and Associates or at the door. All ticket proceeds will be used toward the scholarship money.

Local sponsors and contributors include Fortuna Kiwanis, Humboldt Redwood Company, Jan's Photography Studio, Town of Scotia LLC, Scotia Inn, Dr. Gabriel Enriquez, and many other local businesses and individuals. For more information about the Distinguished Young Woman program, visit www.ajm.org.

photo captions:

1. Felicia Yang

2. Walkyhr Macy

3. Kelsey Meyers

4. Sharman Irfan

(more photos can be found in articles titled “ Young Woman competition set for March 31 in Scotia” parts 2 and 3)