History of Youth of The Year
BGCA’s premier recognition program for Club members
Established in 1947, Youth of the Year is BGCA’s premier recognition program for Club members, promoting service to Club, community and family; academic success; strong moral character; life goals; and poise and public speaking ability. The program is most effective when used as a year-round tool for fostering young people’s character, personal growth and leadership qualities
Local Clubs recognize members ages 14 to 18 as Youth of the Month winners and select a Youth of the Year, who then participates in state competitions. State winners each receive a $1,000 scholarship and participate in regional competitions. Five regional winners each receive a $10,000 scholarship and compete on the national level. The National Youth of the Year receives up to an additional $50,000 scholarship and is installed by the President of the United States.
2017 Waltham Youth of the Year!
Shy Civil is Waltham Boys & Girls Club’s 2017 Youth of the Year. Shy is a senior at Waltham High School with plans of attending College to major in business. She is the President of the Watch City Keystone Club, the high school leadership group at the Boys & Girls Club and has led them to great success. She was able to implement a campaign called the Positive Club Climate where she tackled issues of bullying and low self esteem. This year, Shy facilitated a program to teach younger members about the dangers of prescription drugs and was recognized by the state house for her accomplishments.
2016 Waltham Youth of the Year!
Rachel Cosgrove has been named the Waltham Boys & Girls Club 2016 Youth of the Year. She is a 15 year old freshman at Waltham High School. Rachel is an aspiring Social Worker with hopes to attend Harvard University some day. She has completed over 200 hours of community service since September. She has volunteered in the Club’s After School Program as a member of our Junior Staff. Rachel has also volunteered coaching cheerleading for young girls in Waltham Pop Warner. She is an active participant of the Club’s Watch City Keystone Teen Leadership Program and an excellent role model for Club members. Rachel received a $1,000 scholarship from the Waltham Boys & Girls Club and will be competing for the Massachusetts Youth of the Year title in June.
2015 Massachusetts Youth of the Year!
Victoria was one out of 12 Youth of the Month members for our club in 2014. In February 2015 Victoria won Walthams 2015 Youth of the Year. This qualified her to compete for the Massachusetts 2015 Youth of the Year title. She completed three essays with topics from What the Club means to you? What your brand is? and What is your vision for America’s Youth? After completing those essays, and collecting letters of recommendation Vikki then had to memorize a 3 minute speech to present to the judges at the State competition. After a lot of hard work Vikki attended States on May 4th. She competed against 36 other amazing nominees, from clubs across Massachusetts. After first round of interviews Vikki’s name was called as one of the top 4 finalists to move on to the last round of interviews.
Another round of interviews, a fantastic dinner provided by the 99 Restaurant, and last minute bonding of nominees the wait was finally over. All four finalists were called up and were highly spoken about. At last they announced Victoria Fils-Aime from the Waltham Boys & Girls Club as the 2015 Massachusetts Youth of the Year. It was a fantastic moment and a well deserved one. Victoria proudly accepted the award along with a Dell computer from Comcast, a $1,000 scholarship from the 99 restaurant, and a $5,000 scholarship for claiming the state title. Victoria will now proceed to the Northeast Regional Competition in New York to compete for the 2015 Northeast Regional Youth of the Year title in August of this year.
Waltham Youth of the Year!
Being named the Waltham Boys & Girls Club Youth of the Year is the highest honor a Club member can achieve. Youth of the Year winners exemplify the hard work, determination and hope of Club adolescents and teens throughout the Boys & Girls Club Movement.
Victoria Fils-Aime is our Club’s 2015 Youth of the Year.Victoria has been a member of the Club since a very young age. The Club is one of the only stable things that has remained in her life over the years and although she is only a teen, she deals with issues that only adults should face.
Without any support from her parents she has lived on her own struggling to find a place she can call home. She works two jobs to support herself while continuing to excel in school. She relies on the Boys & Girls Club for a free nutritious meal each night, tutoring and SAT prep, and the guidance of the caring staff who provide support and structure in her life. She is striving to overcome the adversity that exists in her life and go to college. With Waltham Boys & Girls Club in her life Victoria has been able to build a support structure that is allowing her to reach her goals and fulfill her dreams.