GLEN CARBON – Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois (GSSI) is pleased to announce that Kathleen McCracken from Edwardsville, Caroline Stewart from Belleville, and Kayli Worthey from Neoga, have been selected as its 2017 Outstanding Graduating Girl Scout Scholarship winners. The girls were recognized April 1 at GSSI’s annual All That Glitters Ceremony held at the Holiday Inn in Mt. Vernon, Illinois
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Kathleen McCracken from Edwardsville: Kathleen is a Girl Scout Ambassador who has been a Girl Scout for 13 years. She received her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting, in 2016. She is also a GSSI Trifecta recipient, having earned the Girl Scout Silver Award and Girl Scout Bronze Award as well.
Kathleen is currently a senior at Edwardsville High School and plans to attend Drake University in the fall, where she plans to major in International Relations. She states that Girl Scouts has helped her get out of her comfort zone, travel domestically and internationally, try new things and build leadership skills.
“If it weren’t for Girl Scouts, I wouldn’t have gone out of my comfort zone and completed a high ropes course, taken the treacherous step off of multiple ziplines or gone scuba diving. Travel, adventure, and leadership are things that the vast majority of my peers have yet to have. I wholeheartedly believe that the unique experience of Girl Scouts is doing things you wouldn’t normally do,” said Kathleen
Caroline Stewart from Belleville: Caroline is a Girl Scout Ambassador who has been a Girl Scout for 11 years. She received her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting, this year. She is also a GSSI Trifecta recipient, having earned the Girl Scout Silver Award and Girl Scout Bronze Award as well. She has also served as a Girl Scouts’ National Delegate, GSSI ex-officio Girl Board Member and a GSSI robotics team member and mentor.
Caroline is currently a senior at Governor French Academy and also attends Southwestern Illinois College. She plans to study engineering at a top-ranked college in the fall. Caroline states that Girl Scouts has helped her develop an array of skills and knowledge, including public speaking, financial management and leadership, as well as helped her realize her potential to make a difference in the world.
“Through Girl Scouting, I have had several amazing opportunities. However, the adventures I have had are not nearly as important as the skills and experience I have gained, and the way my identity has been shaped. I do not believe that I would be the person I am today had I not remained a Girl Scout,” said Caroline.
Kayli Worthey from Neoga: Kayli is a Girl Scout Ambassador who has been a Girl Scout for 13 years. She received her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting, this year. She is also a GSSI Trifecta recipient, having earned the Girl Scout Silver Award and Girl Scout Bronze Award as well. She has also served as a GSSI ex-officio Girl Board Member and GSSI robotics team member.
Kayli is currently a senior at Neoga High School and plans to attend Indiana State University to study Speech Language Pathology with a minor in Special Education-Elementary in the fall. She states that, through Girl Scouts, she has developed confidence, leadership, respect, optimism and work ethic, along with a sense of belonging.
“Girl Scouts has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. It gave me a place, a purpose and made me feel that I belonged to something. I was part of something bigger that made me who I am today. There’s no other way to describe what Girl Scouts means to me than saying it’s my world,” said Kayli.
GSSI is the premier organization providing all girls in southern Illinois a premier Girl Scout Leadership Experience. GSSI’s mission is to build girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois is a not-for-profit organization supported by various United Ways throughout the region. For more information, please call Jay Strobel at (618) 692-0692.