One lucky Canowindra student has been selected to take part in Regional Development Australia Central West's inaugural TEN4TEN program.
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Claire Wright was selected to be one of the 10 participants in the program from almost 40 applications submitted by Year 11 students from across Orange, Blayney and Cabonne.
Claire said she was "very excited" to be taking part in the program.
"I'm thankful I got in, I think there were 40 applicants and only 10 got chosen," she said.
"So to be selected from little old Canowindra is exciting.
"I got the phone call and was like 'oh my goodness'."
The TEN4TEN program partners the participants with 10 community champions for unique two-way conversations, mentorship and discovery of what career opportunities are available in the region.
Claire said the program provided her with a unique opportunity.
"I found out about it through my Year advisor Ms Balcombe, she showed us and said 'I think this would be a really good program'," she said.
"A few people stepped forward and put in applications, it was only 100 words so it was hard to squeeze it all in on why we wanted to do the program.
"I was looking forward to doing the program to be more involved in the community and learn about it (the community) and what the mentors do."
The students will also visit Australian Parliament House in Canberra and Parliament of NSW in Sydney.
"Andrew Gee is my mentor and when I got the email saying he was my mentor I was so excited," Claire said.
"I think I'll learn a lot from him and gain a lot of knowledge about the local area.
"I don't think I'll enter politics but I am excited to learn more about it and have a more knowledge on it.
"I want to be involved in the community and have a voice to benefit them."
RDA Central West CEO, Sam Harma, said it wasn't easy to choose ten students from the quality applications that were received.
"It was wonderful to read so many impressive applications but it certainly made selecting only ten students quite a difficult task," he said.
"The successful applicants demonstrated a strong sense of community and willingness to give back, but they were also eager to learn from our mentors and how they can become future leaders.
"We want to thank all of the students who applied and congratulate the successful applicants who will make their school and community proud."
Fiona Nash, Strategic Advisor at Charles Sturt University, will officially launch TEN4TEN on Thursday and she has welcomed the opportunity to be part of it.
"Mentors can make a big impact on a young person's life, especially Year 11 students who are in their final years of school and considering what their next step might be after graduation," she said.
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