'Hanging out' -- and helping others -- puts Smith at the top of the club

Josh Miller, program director of the Huntington County Boys and Girls Club, presents Huntington North High School senior Tiffany Smith with he chapter's youth of the year award on Wednesday, March 25.
Photo provided.

Originally published April 9, 2009

Tiffany Smith, a senior at Huntington North High School, has been selected by the local Boys and Girls Club as the community's Youth of the Year.

Smith is the fourth recipient of the Huntington Chapter award, and the first female recipient.
Boys and Girls Club Program Director Josh Miller says,

"Tiffany spent a great deal of her time through middle school at the Boys and Girls Club. She was a daily attendee of the club and was very involved with the programming. She was instrumental in the move from the old site to new site.

"Through what the club could provide for her, she was able to go on to be involved in other things. She's very involved at the high school and maintains exceptional grades. Tiffany really represents want the club is trying to accomplish."

Smith will represent Huntington's chapter at the State Youth of the Year competition in Indianapolis on April 13 and 14.

Aside from regularly attending the club, Smith is currently involved in Huntington North's spring musical.

She says she likes going to the Boys and Girls Club because, "It's a safe place for kids to go and hang out. You get to meet all different kinds of people.

"There's always someone you can hang out with and there's all kinds of stuff going on."

Following graduation, Smith hopes to pursue a chemistry degree at Purdue University. She hopes to enter a graduate program for art restoration after completing her degree.

Youth from around the state will gather for the state competition in Indianapolis and have the opportunity to meet Gov. Mitch Daniels, learn about the legislative process and attend an award ceremony. Accounting firm BKD, LLP sponsors the event, allowing all participants the enjoyment of cost-free meals and lodging. The firm also provides keepsake items and a $500 savings bond for each chapter's Youth of the Year.

The State Youth of the Year will be announced at an evening dinner on April 14. If Smith earns this title, she moves on to the 13-state regional competition.

No Huntington Youth of the Year has ever been named the State recipient.

To be eligible for the Youth of the Year award, club members must be 14 years old and a high school student. They must fill out an application and provide a high school transcript, as well as letters of recommendation.

Applicants are then interviewed by the club's staff. An emphasis is placed on community service, school achievements and home and family life.