Pocahontas County High School junior Trenton Brock became a leader at school and in his community this past year. His passion to serve his school and county was ignited last summer during the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership conference, held at Fairmont State University.
HOBY was established by its namesake in 1958 as a nonprofit organization to inspire youth around the world to dedicate their lives to leadership, service and innovation.
In the four days Brock spent at the conference, he met more than 100 sophomores from across the state and gained a new perspective on his future as a leader.
“It was eye-opening,” he said. “You meet with so many like-minded individuals. I really noticed a big change in my output within my community. I wanted to get involved in more things, like leadership roles. I feel like I’ve been getting even more involved around the school.”
One week at a conference wasn’t enough for Brock. He applied to be and was selected regional director, and he now works with future HOBY candidates who will follow in his footsteps.
“I actually selected two people this year to go – Ramona Hardy and Joey VanMeter,” he said.
Brock will go back this summer with his two candidates, and he will also attend the World Leadership Congress in Chicago, Illinois, as the representative from West Virginia.
“Every state, every country, everyone is there,” he said.
Inspired by his time with HOBY, Brock has been volunteering and organizing community service projects with both local and statewide initiatives. He organized a project for the United Way homeless shelter in Fairmont this past Christmas.
“We decorated bags and filled them with hygiene products and added positive quotes to let them know that they have support,” he said.
It does cost money to attend HOBY conferences and Brock said he is thinking up fundraising ideas for this year. He also encourages community members to consider making donations to help the students grow their leadership skills with the program.
“Whether you’re a student, parent, educator or community member, I encourage you to support HOBY and its mission,” he said. “By investing in the development of young leaders, we can create a brighter future for all.
“HOBY’s impact extends far beyond the seminar itself,” he continued. “Graduates of the program often go on to become influential leaders in their schools, communities and even on a global scale. They become advocates for positive change, inspiring others to take action and make a difference.”
Brock has found many ways to make a difference during his high school career. In addition to HOBY, he is also a member of SADD, RAZE, Natural Helpers, FFA, 4-H, Warriors Above the Influence, The Tribe, Yoga club, line dancing club, Junior committee and has served as class president for the past three years.
He is also an athlete, playing soccer, basketball and track.
And if that wasn’t enough, he also works. He is employed at the Appalachian Kitchen, Tuque’s Bar and Grille and the Pizza Slice, all located in the Corduroy Inn and Lodge at Snowshoe Mountain Resort. This past summer he was a lifeguard at the Green Bank Observatory swimming pool and when he is needed, he lends a hand at Station 2 Restaurant.
Oh, and he also referees youth soccer games.
Brock, the son of Jason and Sarah Brock, is a shining example of what youth leaders look like, and he will continue to advocate for students to have the same experience he did through HOBY.
Those interested in donating to the PCHS HOBY fund may contact the school at 304-799-6564.
For more information on HOBY, visit www.hoby.org