The Rotary Club of Mount Airy sponsors a student and teacher from Mount Airy High School to attend the American Freedom Association’s Global Issues trip to the United Nations.
Students at Mount Airy High School under the leadership of the Interact advisor or sponsoring teacher are invited to participate in a 1000 word essay contest. The topic is chosen by teachers who participate in the program. The long time coordinator of the program is Mt. Tabor teacher Bill Dinkins, who coordinates with the teacher from Mount Airy High School. The top essay participant from Mount Airy High School then becomes eligible to receive the Oscar Merritt Scholarship. This scholarship was established in 1958 by Mount Airy industrialist Oscar Merritt. Funding for the trip is provided by the Frank Smith Foundation managed by The Winston Salem Foundation and donations from organization such as the Rotary Club of Mount Airy.
The student and teacher travel to New York City where an itinerary includes the following: Tour of New York City by night; tour of the United Nations by an international tour guide; attending a Broadway play; a briefing by a United Nations official arranged by Dr. David Stillman, retired United Nations official, Duke University graduate and Director of the Private-Public Foundation for Global Issues. The top four essays are presented at the United Nations before the UN officials, and the top essay receives the prestigious Oscar Merritt Scholarship.
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