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Adams County Teen Chosen For Disney Dreamers Academy

Wendy Mitchell, The Ledger Independent

Taking the initiative to fill out an application, an Adams County girl was successful in being chosen to participate, with 99 other children from across the nation, in the Steve Harvey Disney Dreamers Academy.

Karlie Harper, 17, who is a junior in the Farm Business Management courses at Ohio Valley Career and Technical Center, hopes to one day become a veterinarian.

She is also thankful for the inspiration of her younger brother, Douglas, who battled cancer from a young age.

One of the essays she had to write for the application was about him, she said.

“My brother's illness taught me to appreciate life so much more and to remember what a precious gift life is,” Harper said.

Harper, was notified last week she had been selected from thousands of applications.

“There were celebrities and sports figures on the panel going over the selections when they got down to the top 250,” said Mary Harper, her mother. “I know my little girl is special, but can you imagine, a girl from out here getting chosen out of all those people.”

According to contest organizers, Disney Dreamers Academy with Steve Harvey and Essence Magazine includes 100 outstanding young dreamers and achievers on a three-day journey of inspiration and encouragement.

Celebrities and professionals from a variety of career paths are part of the program to offered insight to attendees and provided advice on how to achieve success.

The program exposes the students to “immersive, deep-dive workshops” in subjects from entertainment and entrepreneurship to medicine, culinary arts and creative inspiration.

The Walt Disney Imagineering minds behind Disney Parks’ theme parks and attractions also participate in the workshops.

Participants also have an opportunity to participate in the behind the scenes at Disney and be a part of a welcome parade, officials said.

The experience includes an expense paid trip to Disney World, in Orlando, Fla., in March 2015, Mary Harper said.

Karlie will be taking a parent, and hopes to take her brother along for the experience, Karlie said.

“I really hope my brother can go too,” she said.

Karlie also wants to travel the world once she has established her own veterinary practice, she said.

“I want to travel to underdeveloped countries to teach people how to care for their animals,” Karlie said.

During the trip to Florida, Harper will also be able to participate in work shops on goals, college preparedness, and achieving your dreams, Karlie Harper said.

In addition to her studies, Karlie Harper is an equestrian who participates showing her Spotted Walking Horse in Gaited Walker horse shows, 4-H and FFA programs.

“When I heard I had been chosen, I was overjoyed and thankful that I was closer to my dream,” Karlie Harper said.

Karlie is the daughter of Brent and Mary Harper.

The Ledger Independent is online at: http://www.maysville-online.com