Youth of the Month August: Emily Westrich
Emily Westrich had a dream come true this summer when she was named Miss Warrick County at Warrick County’s 4-H Fair.
Part of the 17-year-old’s winning formula was answering the question, ‘What characteristics do you want in a friend?’
“I want a friend who is kind and supportive.”
Westrich embodies her succinct and powerful words in her extensive volunteer work, which has resulted in Youth Resources naming the North High School senior its August Youth of the Month.
Although the dream of being Miss Warrick County has been accomplished, Westrich is in the process of living out her more important goal: serving others.
Westrich, an aspiring doctor, serves on the Future Health Professionals (HOSA) Executive Council of Indiana, an international student organization that aims to enhance the delivery of compassionate, quality health care by providing opportunities for knowledge, skill and leadership development of all health science education students to ultimately help students meet the needs of the health care community.
As an Executive Council member, Westrich advocates health care statewide and serves as a resource for the 62 Indiana schools with HOSA representation. On top of her important HOSA duties, Westrich is also a weekly volunteer at Gentiva Hospice.
“That’s my No. 1 thing – helping people,” said Westrich. “When you think hospice it’s not something you think of as bright and cheery, but when you go there it’s a bright and cheery atmosphere. I know that I’m helping in some way. I’m making things easier for other people. I enjoy knowing that I’m helping somehow.”
Because she’s a minor, Westrich can’t work directly with hospice patients. But she handles plenty of administrative tasks and has shouldered a load for the planning of September 10’s Gentiva Hospice Annual Memorial Service, which honors deceased Gentiva residents in the past year.
Not the typical volunteer work you see from students, but it’s reflective of Westrich’s heart for serving others.
“I’ll do everything I can to do that because it’s something I love.”
Westrich’s recognition automatically qualifies her as a finalist for Youth Resources’ Youth of the Year award. She joins Mater Dei’s Grant Riordan, North Junior High’s Geoffrey Grant Greer and Castle’s Landon Eisenhut as 2016-17 Youth of the Month recipients. Youth Resources will name its Youth of the Year at its annual Hall of Fame Celebration in April 2017.