Brian Ariza-Pinzon, a member of the A. Worly Brown Boys and Girls Club in Norcross, was named runner up for the prestigious Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta Youth of the Year award.

Youth of the Year is the highest honor a Club teen can receive in Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta for demonstrating outstanding leadership in their Club, community and school. Ariza-Pinzon, a Norcross High School student, delivered a speech at the Youth of the Year gala on Nov. 8. He competed against 20 other teens from the metro Atlanta area.

Ariza-Pinzon joined the Boys and Girls Club in 2015. In a bio for the Youth of the Year Award, he said personal issues happening back home in South America have discouraged him, but he’s been able to work through obstacles with family and mentors at the club. He wants to encourage others to do the same.

Ariza-Pinzon is a proud member of the Keystone Club, which provides him with community service and leadership programs. He is also a member of the CareerBound program has taught him a lot about preparing for life after high school by learning about the college application process, preparing for standardized tests and exploring hands-on career experiences.

Ariza-Pinson is sharpening his public speaking and presentation skills as a member of Toastmasters. He enjoys mentoring younger club members and said Boys and Girls Club has shaped him into the young leader he is today.

“I see it this way: teens are the next generation, and teens are the ones that are going to change our futures, so we have to prepare to lead in a major way,” he said.

Ariza-Pinzon was selected for a summer internship at DPR Construction, which he said is one of his proudest accomplishments to date. As a project engineer intern, he was able to gain experience in a field similar to the one he wants to pursue after college.

After graduating from high school, Ariza-Pinzon wants to attend Georgia Tech, major in aerospace engineering and become the first person in his family to graduate college.

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