BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - Columbia Middle School student Rachael Prokap represented New Jersey at the 2016 Discovery Girls Magazine Leadership Summit this summer.

Not only did she attend the summit, she wrote an article and was featured in the September/October 2016 magazine.

Discovery Girls Magazine, a NAPPA award winning magazine for "tween" girls focuses on everyday issues and achievements for girls ages 8 to 14. The article about Rachael, includes a post from her web diary that tells how she found out about the summit -- from reading the magazine at her best friend's home. Rachael writes just seeing the word "Leadership" inspired her to fill out the questionnaire and, despite her doubts, sent it in hoping she would be chosen to attend the summit. There were 8,000 applicants and she was one of 36 girls to be chosen for the summit, where issues of importance to tween girls were discussed and ideas for the magazine were brainstormed.

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In the magazine article in the September/October issue of the magazine, she talks about her passions, including her participation in Jersey S.T.E.M. (aka: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), an organization where she is able to work on programming and running experiments in robotics.  Rachael, who has already written a novel that she plans to publish, also speaks about her love for writing and drawing. She is also fluent in Chinese and plays cello and is an accomplished pianist

The article also includes her reflections on the challenges of being a teenager and her reactions to attending the summit as the only New Jersey representative. The 36 participants she met had different interests and came from different places in the United States and Canada, but making friends, while it was challenging, turned into a life lesson on how to make friends -- "A simple wave or hello can go a long way," she wrote. That was only one of her discoveries at the Summit.

To learn more about Discovery Girl Magazine and Rachael, and to read her diary with details about the summit, pick up a copy of the magazine, or visit the Discovery Girls Website.