Youth of the Year finalist: Shamiyah Miller

Published: Feb. 1, 2023 at 6:15 PM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Five finalists are hoping to win the title, which will be announced tomorrow night, Feb. 2.

We’ve been introducing you all week to those impressive young people, and tonight, you meet Shamiyah Miller, a young lady out to prove that following your dream can start at any age.

At 14 years old, Shamiyah is the youngest finalist in the running for Youth of the Year, but this Carver High School ninth-grader says when it comes to reaching for your dreams, age ain’t nothing but a number.

“When I was younger, I didn’t have a lof of confidence, but the staff members broke that shell out of me,” said Miller.

She credits the Boys and Girls Club for helping give her that confidence. She has been going since she was eleven years old and is active in the Keystone club and helps to coach younger cheerleaders.

But Shamiya says, even more than that, the club really helped her deadly with her feelings of loneliness during the pandemic.

“It means everything to me because it helps me so much,” Miller said, “I was going through depression after COVID and coming up here, it helped me a lot because I knew I had someone in my corner.”

“It taught me it’s okay to be alone and you can’t let that get in the way to accomplish your goal or let that get in the way of you doing what you want to do,” she continued.

What Shamiya sees herself doing in the future is becoming a traveling doctor or a teacher. She says she loves the idea of both.

The straight-A student says her friends would describe her as caring and generous, qualities that she believes make her an excellent choice to be the next Youth of the Year.

“I think I should be Youth of the Year because I’m 14, and I think it will send a good message out to younger kids who think they can’t do something because they’re too young,” said Miller.