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Teens will get to see inauguration

The inauguration of President-elect Obama is a hot ticket.

Fort Mill teens Ashley Chumney and Anastasia Morrison will attend and spend five days in the nation's capital as Inaugural Scholars, through the Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference.

“We certainly hope this will inspire the next generation of U.S. leaders,” said Mike Lasday, executive director of the sponsoring Congressional Youth Leadership Council. About 7,300 students will take part, 61 from South Carolina.

The organization seeks students with leadership potential and academic achievement. Both teens were nominated by teachers.

A freshman at Covenant Day School in Matthews, Chumney attended a leadership conference in Spartanburg last year. “We learned a lot about how to work with other people and how to articulate your thoughts…I think the skills we learned will help us in the future, no matter what job we have,” she said.

An aspiring interior designer, Chumney hopes to incorporate her interest in African missions.

Morrison, a junior at Fort Mill High School, has already been on a leadership tour to Washington that was “unbelievable.”

“It is really exciting to be involved in this historic election,” said Morrison, who hopes to become a doctor.

Besides seeing the inauguration, the teens will attend a keynote address by former Secretary of State Colin Powell and former Vice President Al Gore. They'll tour monuments and museums.The Black Tie Gala Inaugural Ball is the culmination.

Morrison already has her dress. Chumney is still shopping.

E-mail Karin Janick at mynews@charlotteobserver.com.

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