Randall Middle School seventh grade student Gracie Vaughan has been invited to the Presidential Inauguration in 2013. She is in need of sponsors to help of the trip.

By Julianne Justis Smith

Gracie Vaughan is a bright, hard-working seventh grade student who charms you with her enthusiastic take on life. She approaches everything with an energy that envelops her audience and makes them want to be a part of whatever she is doing. This hard work and enthusiasm has earned her an invitation to the 2013 Presidential Inauguration.

Vaughan has worked hard academically and in sixth grade, was nominated to attend the Junior National Young Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C. During that week, she toured the capitol and attended leadership classes with other middle school delegates. 

Vaughan came back with a firm understanding of what it takes to be a great leader. She has continued on this path, earning the privilege of taking the SAT’s in seventh grade as well as a spot at The University of Tampa this summer in the Duke University Talent Identification Program. 

The trip to the Presidential Inauguration does not come without a cost. Vaughan is earning her way. She is putting her leadership skills to work and is seeking sponsors to help her pay the tuition. In addition to the inauguration, the week-long trip in January will also include keynote speaker conferences and classes. The cost of the week is high but the reward is higher. In order to gain sponsors, Vaughan will be sending out letters as well as speaking to groups about why this trip is important to her.

Vaughan is no stranger to hard work. In addition to her academic success, she has earned her spot in the Encore (show choir) for the second year in a row. She has also just recently applied to the National Junior Honor Society. She has her future planned. When asked what she wants to be when she grows up, her answer is firm, “I want to be a crime scene investigator. I plan to go to FSU because their Criminology courses are the best in the nation.”

Vaughan’s parents, Carolyn and Grant Vaughan, are incredibly proud of her. When asked what she’d like for Gracie to gain from this trip, Carolyn said, “Confidence in the possibilities that are out there. With opportunities like this, her uniqueness will one day be her greatest strength.”

 “Receiving the invitation was a great moment of pride not only because of the academic side but also because of the leadership side,” said Grant, an 18-year active Army veteran. “And she got it all on her own; all on her merit and her performance.”

To contact the Vaughan’s, e-mail Carolyn and Grant at gracieJRNYLCsponsor@gmail.com.

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