By Tim Jimenez

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Five area high schoolers, interning with the non-profit Philadelphia Youth Network, are in Washington D.C. for a Student Leaders Summit.

Kiara Garcia, a senior at Kensington Creative and Performing Arts High School, is one of five area students on this trip, out of 220 juniors and seniors from around the country. She says she is looking forward to some time away from home and to soak in the experience of getting to know other student leaders:

“Talking to people about their experiences and where they come from influences my perspective. And it’s all about having an open mind.”

What experience will she share? The budget cuts in the district.

“We lost our NTA’s, our teachers, counselors,” she says.

So, she’s part of a team that implemented peer mediation and other programs to, in her words, keep school spirit alive. Garcia says she hopes to use all of these experiences in leadership now to help mold her future:

“I want to create something that I could have power to do good.”

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