Khadija MurphyCamden High School (CHS)student Khadija Murphy talks about the essay she wrote that contributed to her winning the 2019 Boys & Girls Clubs of the Crescent Region Youth of the Year Award. Teachers and mentors surprised her in CHS’ cafeteria on March 27.
For the second year in a row, Camden High School (CHS) has a Boys & Girls Club Youth of the Year award recipient, this time in the form of senior Khadija Murphy. On March 27, several Boys & Girls Club officials and others surprised Khadija in the school’s cafeteria to present her with the Boys & Girls Club of the Crescent Region’s 2019 Youth of the Year award.
A year ago, a similar scene took place when the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands presented Jaelen Bussey with the Midlands Youth of the Year award for 2018. The Crescent Region combines the Midlands with York County.
According to a press release, Crescent Region officials selected Khadija over two other outstanding youth. The Youth of the Year award recognizes a young person’s leadership, service, academic excellence and dedication to live a healthy lifestyle. Khadija will now go on to contend for the S.C. Youth of the Year title and a $5,000 scholarship from the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
“Khadija is an outstanding young woman and I am so proud of her to represent our organization at the state competition this year,” Boys & Girls Club of Kershaw County (BGCKC) Executive Director Robin Saviola said.
According to the press release, Khadija has participated in the Job Readiness Training program, where she learned important job skills such as responsibility, time management and punctuality. As part of the program, she worked at the BGCKC’s Jackson Teen Center (JTC) across from the high school. As part of that work, she assisted in the redesign of two gaming rooms at the JTC with Aaron’s Furniture.
Khadija, who currently holds a 4.7 GPA -- said an essay she wrote focuses on her mother who raised Khadija and her brother as a single parent while attending college earning multiple degrees. She has had to read, and will again, the essay aloud as part of the competition.
“I also wrote about how I’ve done a bunch of honors courses … and I’m graduating with credits from Central (Carolina Technical College),” Khadija said. “During this time, I was also caring for my sick grandmother. She has Alzheimer’s, so I was helping her when I got out of school every day.”
If Khadija wins at the state competition, she will compete for the title of Southeast Region Youth of the Year and an additional $10,000 college scholarship, renewable for four years up to $40,000. Five regional winners will advance to Washington, D.C., in September to compete for the title of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year will receive an additional scholarship of $25,000, renewable each year up to $100,000.
The Youth of the Year recognition program is presented by the Walt Disney Company, which has supported the Boys & Girls Clubs of America for more than 50 years, empowering young people to reach their full potential and providing youth with access to the tools they need to build the great futures they imagine. Toyota is the signature sponsor of the national Youth of the Year program.
Khadija is headed to the College of Charleston’s pre-med program in the fall. She will compete in the state competition in Myrtle Beach the weekend of April 26-28.