County Commissioner Tim Boyd said he is using $5,000 of his annual $100,000 in "discretionary funds" for a scholarship for a UTC student to become immersed in county government.
He said the plan is for the student to attend all commission meetings and go to many of the governmental functions he attends.
Commissioner Boyd said he hopes the student "will use social media to energize this generation about government." He said, "I don't even know how to use social media, but the upcoming generation does."
He said he also wants the program to demonstrate "that government is not conducted in back rooms. I haven't found the back room yet."
Commissioner Boyd said the UTC chancellor's office is holding the funds in an account to be drawn upon by the student for tuition, books and other school needs.
He said that office also helped spread the word about the availability of the funds for a student from his District 8.
He said he interviewed several candidates and chose Shalin Nandlal Shah, who is president of the UTC Student Government Association.
Commissioner Boyd said Mr. Shah lives on South Seminole in East Ridge like he does, but he said he did not know him before the process started.
He said he had not informed other commissioners about his scholarship project. He said, "They don't tell me how they spend their discretionary money."
He said he does not know how the program will work out. "It's just an experiment," he said.