Continuing the legacy
Five students place as Distinguished Delegate
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The Youth and Government team competed this past weekend in the 70th annual YMCA State Conference. Five out of nine students placed as Distinguished Delegates, the award for the top delegates in each section.
“I enjoyed meeting new people from around Texas and seeing how other kids have different high school experience,” junior Heather Costello said. “Being in media, I was able to move around the capitol and see all aspects of the Youth and Government program and write stories about interesting people and bills.
Distinguished Delegates were senior Jared Bouloy for Senate, sophomore Bri Branscomb for House of Representatives, sophomore Jesse-elijah Williams for Hyde Senate, senior Richard Philip for Hyde House and junior Kyle Gehman for Print Media.
The Lions competed in two different categories, media and legislative. Legislators debated bills on the House and Senate floors of the Texas State Capitol, while the media delegates covered different topics throughout the event.
“Getting to understand how laws are passed in our state and participate in a mock-version of those procedures was an eye opening experience,” Branscomb said. “There are many layers to politics, and it’s easy to get caught up in what biases you had when you walked into the room, but it’s important to leave those biases behind to do what’s best for everyone, and be as fair as possible.”
Up next the students will be able to apply for the Conference of National Affairs in North Carolina this July.
“It was great being able to watch a bunch of regular kids come together to act professional and practice democracy,” Gehman said. “With all the chaos and division right now in politics, it really was nice knowing that there are still kids who care about how our country is run and the way it is run. I hope that next year we will be able to continue our program’s success with a lot of new delegates.”