Above: The El Rey Theater’s marquee with the GRAMMY Camp Launch Party (final concert); inset: Ryan Seacrest (host of American Idol, American Top 40, and E! News) and Guzmán. (Submitted photos)
Above: The El Rey Theater’s marquee with the GRAMMY Camp Launch Party (final concert); inset: Ryan Seacrest (host of American Idol, American Top 40, and E! News) and Guzmán. (Submitted photos)

This past summer, a Decorah High School senior had an experience she has described as "life-transforming," when she attended GRAMMY Camp -- a live-in music industry camp where high school students from around the country get to work with music professionals to get real-world experience and advice about how to have a career in music.

Rita Guzmán, the daughter of Juan Tony Guzmán and Rita Tejada, first learned about the GRAMMY Camp program after the 2013 GRAMMY Awards telecast.

"The head of the GRAMMYs, Neil Portnow, talked about GRAMMY Camp and described what it was," she recalls. "My curiosity led me to look up the website and I decided to apply."

For the application, she had to record a video essay addressing why she wanted to go to camp, what her interests in the music industry were, and what she thought she would be able to contribute to camp.

The 10-day-long camp was, she says, "way too short, in my opinion."

For complete story and more photos, see Thursday's Decorah Journal.