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Tadesse Wins Cummings Youth Fellowship

Katrina Bucher, Staff

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As more and more young role models appear in politics, CHS teens are becoming both confident in sharing their political voice and curious as to how our government operates. Catonsville junior Deborah Tadesse decided she wanted to be more involved and sought out and earned an Elijah Cummings Youth Program Fellowship to help with this goal.  

The ECYP program gives participants in their junior through senior year the opportunity to work with congressman Elijah Cummings and other interested youth to build communication skills, learn about religion (Judaism), diversity, and travel to Israel. 

According to the Elijah Youth Program Website, the fellowship Tadesse won “focuses on preparing students in Maryland’s 7th congressional district to serve as open-minded leaders with the skills, community ties, and global exposure critical to success in a diverse society”. 

Winning this fellowship was no easy or quick task. Tadesse describes the long and complicated application process. 

“There are lots of stages in the application. First, they look at your application and decide whether to move you to the next level, which is then an interview with Cummings and his team who ask questions about why you want to go. Then they select who will come, which is only 13 kids,” explained Tadesse. 

But to Tadesse, the strenuous application process was worth the cultural exposure that came with being a part of the Elijah Cummings Youth Program. 

“I entered largely because of the cultural immersion trip to Israel. I want to see the Israeli society and the ongoing effects of the Israel and Palestinian war. It also strongly aligns with my religious beliefs,” stated Tadesse. 

While Tadesse loves ECYP for the opportunities and travel, Tadesse also knows how strong this can be for her future endeavors. 

“Being in ECYP gives you the perk of getting college recommendations by the congressman himself, and his team, which will hopefully get me places,” stated Tadesse. 

Tadesse strongly urges her peers to take advantage of the incredible programs and opportunities out there.  

“I battled back and forth with applying, but I’m so happy I ended up doing it. I’ve made new friends, learned so much, and will be going out of the country for the first time in my life. Try something new!” exclaimed Tadesse. 

If you or someone you know is interested in applying for the Elijah Cummings Youth fellowship, go online to ECYP.org for their contact information, or you can go directly to their center in Baltimore, MD to talk to someone in person at the address below. Get ready to apply for next year, sophomores! 

Elijah Cummings Youth Program in Israel (ECYP) 

5750 Park Heights Avenue 

Baltimore, MD 21225 

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