Josh Rimes selected as People to

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 20, 2001

People student ambassador


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Feb. 19, 2001 10 PM

Opportunities of a lifetime don’t come around often.

When they do, you’d better grab hold and not let go.

That’s the way Josh Rimes, a junior at Goshen High School, views life. And, now that an opportunity of a lifetime has come his way, he’s not about to let it slip by.

Josh has been invited by People to People International and Gov. Don Siegelman to be a member of the Official State of Alabama Delegation traveling to England, Wales and Ireland this summer.

Thirty outstanding Central Alabama high school students were selected from 250 applicants to be People to People Student Ambassadors.

"This is a rare opportunity, especially for a student from a small rural high school," said Gene Nelson, principal of Goshen High School. "We share Josh’s enthusiasm. He is a very deserving young man."

Josh said he is excited about the opportunity because it will be both an educational and social experience.

"This is a chance for me to visit countries that I have read about and studied about but never thought I would see," he said. "We will get to visit historic places, but the best thing about the trip is that we will have two home stays. That’s where we will spend a couple of days with a family in the country we are visiting. We will learn what life is really like in that country – not just about the places tourists visit."

The People to People Student Ambassadors will spend 21-days in the European countries and Josh said the experiences he gains will benefit him in many ways.

"President Dwight D. Eisenhower founded People to People in 1956 and he believed that the world would be a better place and people could get along better if they could meet each other one-on-one," he said.

"I believe, as student ambassadors, we can have a positive impact on international relations and we can do it one-on-one. What I learn on this trip, will affect the rest of my life."

Josh said the only "downer" about the trip is that he must raise the $4,000 that it will cost.

"So far, with the help of my family and friends, I’ve raised a little more than$1,000," he said. "We cooked and sold Boston butts and we were up all night cooking and wrapping them, but it was worth it because I got the first installment payment. Now, I’ve got to raise the other two-thirds."

Josh said he is planning other fundraisers including bake sales and car washes.

A fund has been set up at Goshen High School to aid Josh with the financial obligations for the trip.

"We desire to see one of our students excel in this way," Nelson said, adding that anyone wishing to make a contribution to this opportunity for Josh may do so by making a check payable to Goshen High School for Josh Rimes.

Josh said he is also seeking sponsors for his ambassadorship.

"There are some businesses and organizations that support youth programs and I would appreciate their consideration," Josh said. "The remainder of the money is due by May 1 and I would appreciate any help I could get."

Josh is an honor student at Goshen and is a member of the ROTC program. He is involved in school, community and church activities and plans to share his experiences as a People to People Student Ambassador with groups upon his return.

"My experiences might motivate other students to become involved in programs like People to People," he said. "So, this trip is not just for me. It’s for my school and my community. It’s an opportunity I don’t want to miss."