Fardouza Farah earns prestigious award


Fardouza Farah after recieving award.

Haylee Mullenbach, Writer

Owatonna junior, Fardouza Farah, was honored by being selected as an outstanding high school student interested in pursuing a career in public service. The United States Senate Youth Program is a unique and annual education experience for juniors and seniors. Typically, after the two winners per state are selected, they travel to Washington to watch their National government in action. With the pandemic, the experience will be held with an online format, taking place March 14th-18th of 2021. The two students from each state attend the online program and each receives a $10,000 undergraduate scholarship for college. The award is based on leadership participation and qualities, and Farah is well-deserving of the award. 

Farah has support throughout all of Owatonna as she is involved in multiple organizations throughout our community. To qualify for the award, it was required that the participant be in student council and involved in multiple other leadership positions. In school, Farah is involved in many clubs including Speech, Mock Trial, National Honor Society, SHOC, Green Team, Owatonna Girls United, Student Council, Link Crew and Colorguard. Her involvement in the school itself shows her dedication. Farah’s school counselor, Sarah Craig, has known her since she started as a freshman at OHS. Craig said, “Fardouza challenges herself to broaden her horizons and find experiences that are not always available locally.” Craig has seen the leadership positions taken on by Farah and said, “She is a great student and young woman.”

Farah is also the president of Minnesota Youth Against Sexual Violence. This is a program that’s main purpose is to provide support for sexual assault survivors. Farah said, “I am leading a political campaign to pass a law in Minnesota, making our state more accommodating to sexual assault survivors; I have met with over 20 state house representatives and Mn state senators.” She is also on the executive board of the International Central Asian Project where she tutors a group of girls in Kyrgyzstan twice a week. Along with tutoring these girls, Farah co-founded the FL tutoring service which is a non-profit organization in Minnesota that provides free tutoring for low-income students. Farah goes out of her way to help those around her and does what she can for the community; she is passionate about her club and organization involvement. Farah is also on the core team of the national Justice Education project, which is the only youth-run non-profit raising awareness about and combating systematic racism. 

Farah has worked hard for where she is at today, and in doing so she is setting herself up for a successful future. With receiving this award, Farah will meet online and learn from the highest elected and appointed officials in Washington. The United States Senate Youth Program provides a foundation of knowledge and encouragement for those considering a future of public service on the local, state or national level.