Panhandle High School graduate wins in Don’t Mess With Texas® Scholarship Contest

Local News

PANHANDLE, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – A recent graduate of Panhandle High School, Olivia Horner, is among the winners of the 2021 Don’t Mess With Texas® Scholarship Contest, earning $2,000 to apply towards her business studies at Texas A&M University.

The Don’t Mess With Texas® Scholarship Contest was described by the Organization as presented every year in partnership with Keep Texas Beautiful, and aims to recognize students who take an active role in litter prevention in their schools and communities.

Olivia Horner, via the Don’t Mess With Texas website

Horner was selected, according to the Organization, based on her clean-up effort in the North Heights neighborhood in Amarillo, Texas. With friends, family and area businesses, she gathered a truck, trailer and volunteers. She spent a day cleaning up the area and making numerous trips to a landfill to dispose of mattresses, furniture, tires, wood and other debris that was littering the neighborhood. She and her team of volunteers collected more than 3,500 pounds of trash during the eight-hour clean-up, which covered more than 80 city blocks.

In total, $9,000 in scholarships were reported awarded in 2021 to three high school seniors. This year, the scholarships were sponsored by Buc-ee’s and iHeartMedia.

Olivia said the time spent with her clean-up will likely leave lasting changes for her and her classmates.

“My volunteers and I had the opportunity to see what a neighborhood looks like when it is overtaken by litter,” she said. “I believe that after participating in this clean-up, we will pick-up trash in our own yards, in our own neighborhoods and even in other states while on vacation.”

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