Taylor Durrant of Emery High School has been selected to attend the 2020 Governor’s Honors Academy hosted at Southern Utah University, which will take place on June-19-27. This upcoming trip to the academy prompted Durrant to visit the Emery County Commissioners to request a donation to fund the experience.
“The Governor’s Honors Academy was founded in 1988 through a vision of Utah corporate and political leaders,” the organization shared. “The Academy is organized to provide Utah high school students with an opportunity to learn, lead and interact with some of the foremost leaders in business, technology, humanities, science, education, communication and social science. Through interaction with leaders and mentors, students enhance their desire to learn and strive for excellence.”
The selection makes Durrant one of the exclusive bunch of Utah students that are being invited to participate in this year’s Governor’s Honor Academy. According to Durrant, only 50 of the top students in Utah are selected to participate each year. This selection is determined by students’ grade point averages and ACT scores.
The academy involves an intense learning experience that provide leadership training and life skills development for participants. “Over the past several years, students have experienced the accelerated vision of the Governor’s Honors Academy. Each one has learned to propel themselves into a world of changing priorities, technology, economics and politics,” the academy shared. “The goal of the academy is to nurture the life of the mind through further exploration and a greater commitment to personal and professional excellence.”
Those selected to participate in the academy are encouraged to ask for support, including monetary commitments, from employees and elected officials. Since Durrant is employed at the Emery Aquatic Center, his request from the commissioners fits both of these requirements.
The commissioners were very supportive of the request and proud of Durrant for being chosen, saying that a monetary commitment would be a great investment into the work Durrant can do in the future. “I don’t look at it as a donation,” said commissioner Kent Wilson. “I look at it as an investment in a future leader.”
Wilson then motioned to give Durrant $250 from the county to support his participation at the academy. The motion passed unanimously by all of the commissioners. One stipulation the commissioners included is that Durrant will be required to report back on his experience at the academy and what he learned.