Earlier this year, several young ladies belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints earned a special honor called the Young Womanhood Recognition Award, which is received after completing a program called “Personal Progress.”
The program is available to young women, starting at age 12, who choose to participate. There are eight categories that must be completed, and each section is based on qualities and principles that the youth are encouraged to develop and use in day-to-day life. These vibrant, lovely and cheerful young ladies have memorized the eight different categories, called the Values, and can list them off rapid-fire when asked.
Editor’s note: This is part two of a series of four articles interviewing some of the young women who earned the award in 2015.
Lovell 4th Ward
Sixteen-year-old Emilie Asay of the Lovell 4th Ward recently received her Young Womanhood Recognition Award from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. When asked, Emilie can list eight categories rapid-fire, as she spent about 2½ years completing the personal progress program that leads to the Recognition Award. Emilie said that, for her, the hardest part of earning the award was completing the various “Value Experiences,” or mini-assignments to perform small tasks toward accomplishing one of the categories, and which also take more than two weeks each. She said that her favorite part of the program was the actual completion of each goal, “that feeling of ‘yes! I did it!’ when I would get one finished.”
Lovell 4th Ward
Lovell 4th Ward member Chayli McArthur has also completed her award, which is generally presented to each recipient in a regular Sunday’s sacrament meeting. Eighteen-year-old Chayli says that a favorite part of her accomplishment is that she feels like she learned to understand herself better because of it, and also that it’s easier than you’d think; and the hardest part for her was “finding time to do the program right, but that’s because you’re already doing a lot of the things included.” She received encouragement from her family, and is appreciative of not only them, but of the experience itself.
Lovell 5th Ward
“I was 15 when I got the award,” said now 16-year-old Katy Robertson, “and it was part of my goal to get it done by the time I was 15.” Her choice was the gold medallion. She liked that “‘I did it’ feeling” of completing her different goals, and said that even though it was kind of overwhelming when she first started out, she got lots of support from her mom and her aunt. Another favorite part? Big brother Ethan helped with one of her bigger projects, a complete scripture mastery book for seminary. She’s grateful for the support, and feels that she grew closer to him during his help with the project.
Jamie, 17, has a silver medallion to show for her hard work. She said that the hardest part of her Personal Progress, at first, was “sticking with it; I was kind of young when I started it, and I didn’t put as much effort into things.” As she got a little older and started projects like indexing and reading the Book of Mormon, she found that “it was time-consuming but worth it. I really liked the payback I would get from the experience; it’s so rewarding, and builds character…Personal Progress is awesome!”
Cowley 2nd Ward
Kalley said the program “was fun, and it made you work, because it was hard to achieve. I like the feeling you got when you accomplished each part.” She chose a silver medallion for her award necklace.
By Wendy Roth