Fort McCoy News March 27, 2015

Nott selected as state's Military Youth of the Year

MADISON, Wis. — Hailing from Boys & Girls Club of Fort McCoy-Child, Youth & School Services (CYSS), Fort McCoy Family member Elissa Nott has been selected as the Wisconsin Military Youth of the Year by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA).


Fort McCoy Family member Elissa Nott (center) earned a $5,000 college
scholarship after being selected Wisconsin's Military Youth of the Year.

Contributed photo

SThe Youth of the Year title is a prestigious honor bestowed upon an exemplary young person in recognition of leadership, service, academic excellence, and dedication to living a healthy lifestyle. The program honors the nation's most awe-inspiring young people on their paths to great futures and encourages all youths to lead, succeed, and inspire. As the new teen representative, Nott will represent all members of BGCA-affiliated youth centers in Wisconsin. She received a $5,000 college scholarship for earning the award.

Nott has been a member at BGCA at Fort McCoy for about three years, and has participated in Army CYSS programs at different installations almost her entire life. She has contributed to club activities through volunteer work, even on nonschool days, assisting club staff with programming in the five core services areas of character and leadership development, education and career development, health and life skills, the arts, and sports fitness and recreation.

Nott was one of only two teens selected from more than 30 military installations to represent the Installation Management Command Central Region as a member of the Army Teen Panel (ATP). The ATP serves as the voice of Army youth for Army senior leaders and consists of 13 teenage members worldwide. (See The Real McCoy: Aug. 22, 2014.)

In addition to this opportunity, Nott also spoke in front of Wisconsin state legislators on behalf of Fort McCoy military teens about the importance of BGCA and other programming benefitting military youth.

Nott has provided considerable service outside the context of BGCA, as well. She volunteers regularly at her church and school, in addition to the local American Legion Post. Nott also volunteered at the Warrior and Family Support Center for wounded veterans and their Families while attending the Youth Leadership Forum in Texas.

Her leadership abilities in relation to other military teens were bolstered through attending numerous military youth camps throughout the country. These experiences have enhanced her ability to serve as a voice for military youth.

In addition to her displays of service, Nott has excelled in academics. She attends Aquinas High School in La Crosse and was the recipient of a 2014 President's Education Awards Program Outstanding Academic Achievement Award.

Nott is a member of the school cross-country and track teams, as well as the Fort McCoy swim team. She also participated in the drama club musical and is a member of the Tri-Music Honor Society.

After high school, Nott hopes to attend the U.S. Naval Academy and pursue a career in maritime service. She is a member of the U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps and was selected to participate in the Sisters Under Sail program, a unique female leadership opportunity. As a part of this program, Nott spent time in each of the last two summers aboard the Unicorn, the only all-female-crewed tall ship in the world. (See related story.)

"Elissa and all Youth of the Year nominees are living proof that Boys & Girls Clubs across the country are fulfilling our mission of inspiring and enabling young people to achieve great futures," said Jim Clark, BGCA president and CEO. "Being named Youth of the Year is a lifelong honor. These individuals exemplify the Boys & Girls Club mission and demonstrate the impact Clubs make on transforming and saving kids' lives."

This summer, Nott will compete against other BGCA members in the Midwest region. If selected the regional winner, she will be awarded an additional $10,000 college scholarship, renewable for four years up to $40,000. Six youths, including five regional winners and the military youth winner, will advance to Washington, D.C., in September, to compete for the title of BGCA's National Youth of the Year.

The National Youth of the Year will receive an additional $25,000 scholarship, renewable for four years up to $100,000, and will have the opportunity to meet with the president at the White House.

For more information about the Youth of the Year program, visit www.bgca.org/yoy. For more information about BGCA, visit www.bgca.org. For more about Fort McCoy CYSS teen programs, call 608-388-4373.

   (News release from Boys & Girls Clubs of America.)