ROCKINGHAM — The Rockingham Middle School Junior Beta Club Chapter has 24 students eligible to attend Beta Nationals in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on June 15 to 18.
At Nationals, students will be competing in visual arts and academic competitions against other Junior Beta Chapter students.
While in Okalhoma, Nikki Covington, one of nine advisors to the Junior Beta Chapter, said the students will go on a 3-hour tour of Oklahoma visiting the Oklahoma History Center and Centennial Land Run Monument, as well as the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Myriad Botanical Gardens, Chesapeake Arena, Oklahoma City Boathouse District, and Oklahoma Capitol.
“It gives them exposure to travel and see other parts of the world. They get to experience new cultures,” said Covington. “That’s why I’m emphatic that we get to see other museums and the places we’re visiting. It’s important that they don’t have a myopic view of the world.”
Of the 24 eligible, only 10 are going to Nationals. Of those, one is in seventh grade, three are in sixth grade and six are in eighth grade.
“It’s a 20 hour drive,” Covington said. “Richmond County Schools has a policy where they pay for First and Second place winners” from the state competition, which keeps costs per student lower. Because of this policy, students’ board and travel was mostly paid for, but the parents have to incur any extra expenses.
Last year the chapter went to Savannah, Georgia, in 2017 they took 70 children to Disney World and in 2016 they went to New Orleans. Next year’s Nationals will be in Fortworth, Texas.
They are hosting a benefit dinner at Pattan’s Downtown Grille from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on June 4. A portion of the sales will go directly to the trip.
The Junior Beta Chapter is also taking monetary donations. For more information contact Covington at 910-995-4359 or Rockingham Middle School.
Reach Alex Smith at 910-817-2675 or [email protected]