NEED Student Leadership


The NEED Project recognizes student leadership by awarding the Youth Energy Leadership Award each year to up to two students who have demonstrated outstanding energy leadership, knowledge, and an interest in continuing their energy studies for the purpose of seeking a career in energy, STEM, or education. Each year, at least one award will be given to a student who plans to enter the energy field or public service related to energy. Select award winners will receive a $1,500 check  for use for college, university or technical school tuition and expenses.


This award is designed to honor students demonstrating effective leadership skills and energy knowledge throughout their association with NEED.
The following are examples of traits the award committee will consider as it chooses recipients of the awards:

  • An effective leader who leads by example and is well respected by his or her peers.
  • An encouraging facilitator who serves as a team leader.
  • A leader who creates excitement and motivates others to accomplish great things.
  • A leader who demonstrates energy awareness at home, school and in the community and educates others about energy.
  • A student who is knowledgeable about energy and has taken the time to not only be a leader of energy activities but has developed a knowledge base about energy and important energy issues.
  • Graduating high school seniors or current first or second year college, university or technical school students.
  • A student showing interest in pursuing a career in the energy, STEM or education field.

2025 NEED Leadership Award
Please review the PDF application outline before proceeding online. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Applications are due by April 30th. Any questions, please email

2024 Youth Energy Leadership Award

NEED congratulates Vick Mahindru and Laura Sofía Pardo Arévalo
on receiving the 2024 Youth Energy Leadership Award!
Each will receive $1,500 to pursue their education goals.

Vick Mahindru

Press Release (PDF)

Laura Sofía Pardo Arévalo

Press Release (PDF)

Past Youth Leadership Award Winners:

1994 Doug Blemker

1995 Josh Rising

1996 Judith Elekes

1997 Matt Steele & Tiffany Bonner

1998 Emily Thomas

1999 Heather Brouillet

2000 Heidi Nees

2001 Rebecca Lamb

2002 Justin Paschall

2003 Brian Bosso & Mary Mazarolli

2004 Megan Thoma & David Graham

2005 Jennifer Robinson, Caterina Spaziano, & Chrissy Edwards

2006 Roxie Brown & Michelle Lamb

2007 Whitney Newman & Jake Kesner

2008 Ryan Flynn

2009 Casey O’Connor

2010 Erin Shoaf

2011 Rachael Spencer & Amanda Ramirez Sebree

2012 Alysha Anderson

2013 Brooke Reagan

2014 Ian Munn & Amber Lipsky

2015 Janelli Pineda

2016 Alton Gayton & Laurel Hughes

2017 Diane Wei

2018 Erin Baer & Edmond Gayton

2019 Aidan Kotoski & Jennifer Wei

2020 Mariam Conde, Erin Keene, Patrick Keene, Chira Noce, & Chloe Weiss

2021 Grace Beatty, Jayden Chan, Colleen Keene, Teegan Mathey

2022 Carolyn Lee

2023 Aiden Dowling & Cheyanne Higgins