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The Nation's Premier Youth Health & Safety Organization
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The Nation's Premier Youth Health & Safety Organization
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SADD SPEAKs Kirtana Choragudi

SADD SPEAKs Kirtana Choragudi

Picture of me and Senator Stabenow from the SADD SPEAKs program

Picture of me and Senator Stabenow from the SADD SPEAKs program

I’m Kirtana Choragudi and I’m a current senior at Kingsford High School in Kingsford, MI. I have
been president of my high school SADD Chapter for three years and I am extremely passionate
about SADD! I was recently named SADD National SLC Member and Student of the Year
201617.

Last summer, I had the honor of participating in the SADD SPEAKs program with 14 other
inspiring students. We were able to advocate on behalf of issues that are important to teens,
and learned a plethora of information on advocating, public speaking, legislative processes
specifically with teen-related issues, and much more! Although the issues were already
important to us before the program, SADD SPEAKs truly empowered us and gave us the
information, resources, and tools needed to advocate on the behalf of our peers. We were able
to help plan and host a congressional briefing in Washington, D.C., and many of us were even
able to meet one of our home state senators. Along with all of these amazing opportunities, we
were also able to meet and become very close with a group of extremely qualified and diverse
students. Although we were only together for a few days, I know I will continue to keep many of
them as good friends for years to come! It’s so difficult to pick a favorite specific part of this
experience, because there was so much that I loved about the entire experience.

When I was first accepted to SADD SPEAKs, I was in shock! The SADD SPEAKs program was
one of my first experiences which introduced me to SADD at a national level. Since my state
does not have a state SADD chapter, my experience with SADD had been limited to my local
chapter up until the 2015 SADD National Conference and the SPEAKs program. Learning about
how to help advocate for important teen issues, and learning about those issues specifically was
definitely one of the highlights of my SPEAKs experience. The experience empowered me so
much that I knew I wanted to be involved even more with SADD nationally for years to come,
and inspired me to apply for the SADD National SLC and Student of the Year. SADD SPEAKs
opened up an entire world of opportunities, learning experiences, and information that I would
never have had if I had not applied last May. SADD students around the country would all
benefit from applying and participating in this amazing program, and I know it will change their
lives just as much or even more than it changed mine.