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CCSD Student Named One of Top 21 Youth Leaders in Georgia

Posted On: Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Ila Prabhuram

A Cherokee County School District student is one of the top 21 youth leaders in Georgia! 

Etowah High School junior Ila Prabhuram has been honored by the 21st Century Leaders nonprofit organization with its 2022 Georgia Youth Leadership Award.  The annual awards recognize the “extraordinary achievements of 21 inspirational high school students from across Georgia and their commitment to leadership in their communities and schools.”

“We’re so proud of Ila and her continued dedication to making her school, community and world a better place,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said.  “Ila is one of the students who helped us develop the Blueprint long-range strategic plan for our school district, and she greatly impressed me with her intelligence and thoughtfulness.  She is very deserving of recognition as one of our state’s most inspiring young leaders.”

Ila will be honored by the organization at its annual awards ceremony later this month at the Buckhead Theatre in Atlanta.  Each honoree will be presented with a $500 grant.  She will be recognized by the Cherokee County School Board and Superintendent of Schools at the March School Board Meeting.

The honorees are chosen by a member selection committee made up of Atlanta Business Chronicle “40 Under 40” members and 21CL Board of Directors, alumni and student peers.  Ila and her fellow honorees also each will be paired with a “40 Under 40” leader to serve as a professional mentor.

In addition to exemplary academic achievement, Ila’s many accolades have included her appointment for three terms of service on the State Superintendent of Schools’ Student Advisory Board, and her selection for the Model Atlanta Regional Commission teen leadership program and Harvard University’s Making Caring Common Youth Advisory Board.  Ila also founded a nonprofit organization, College Pathway, to assist low-income students in accessing higher education.  

She started an online magazine to amplify marginalized youth voices, is a regular contributor to Scholastic Teen Magazine and has served as editor for Etowah’s school newspaper.  A member of Etowah’s Model UN, National English Honor Society and Flight Club leadership program, Ila also volunteers for the Sequoyah Regional Library System, the Borgen Project to combat global poverty, and Village Book Builders, through which she mentors students in Kenya.

“Ila is a leader in the school and treats all students and staff with respect, dignity and kindness,” Principal Robert Horn said.  “Ila is truly self-motivated to help others and be involved in projects that make our world a better place.  It is my hope that other students will follow her positive leadership and have the same internal drive to help others.” 
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