U.S. Senate Youth Program
Contact Joey Wiseman, social studies coordinator for the West Virginia Department of Education, at (304) 558-5325, or the Office of Communications at 304-558-2699 for more information. Additional program information can be found on the U.S. Senate Youth Program website at www.ussenateyouth.org .
Information about the 2013-2014 scholarship will be mailed to all High School Principals in mid-August. Please see your school Principal or Counselor about the testing process. Once testing is completed twelve semifinalists are chosen from the USSYP exams' highest scores. Those 12 students go through the complete application process. Six finalists are then chosen by a selection committee based on their applications. The six finalists come to the State Supreme Court Chambers and present on one of two topics. The presentations are viewed by a selection committee of six. The committee members have a question and answer period with the applicants as well as informal conversations. Using all of the above the individual committee members score each finalist using a rubric. Total scores from the rubrics are combined to select the final two delegates and the two alternates.
The 51st Washington Week was, once again, an extraordinary and inspiring endeavor that will surely be remembered by all as an experience of a lifetime. Two student delegates from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity came together for an intensive educational experience about the American government, learning from and being encouraged by the highest level elected and appointed officials in the country. Speakers for the 51st annual program included:
Each year, the state department of education selection administrators from the states of the two acting Senate
Co-Chairs are invited to attend Washington Week and see the program and the students up close. This year, Senator Shaheen and Senator Burr were our Co-Chairs and we were pleased to host Ms. Lori Temple from the New Hampshire Department of Education and Ms. Michelle McLaughlin from the North Carolina Department of Education as our distinguished guests in education for the week.
The United States Senate Youth Program is truly an amazing program. It is something I will always be thankful for and will never forget. I got to spend an entire week in Washington DC with all expenses paid. I got to meet President Obama, Justice Kagen, and Secretary Kerry.
The fact that I can say that I was in the White House and actually meet the President is surreal. I got a real life experience of how the United States government works. Instead of reading about politics in Washington DC, The Hearst Foundation gave me a real world experience.
The most thrilling experience for me was being able to meet and befriend the other 103 delegates from around the world. Seeing how there is people my age who want to do public service was truly awesome. I would recommend anybody in the country apply for the United States Senate Youth Program Scholarship.
Two W.Va. Students Named U.S. Senate Youth Scholars
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Two students from Kanawha and Harrison counties have been named U.S. Senate Youth Program Scholarship winners and will represent West Virginia in Washington, D.C., this spring.
Isaac Jones, a student at Capital High School in Charleston, and Julian Pecora, a student at Notre Dame (Catholic) High School in Clarksburg, were chosen from across the state to be part of the group of 104 student delegates who will attend the program’s 51st Anniversary Washington Week in March. Both students also receive $5,000 scholarships.
“An in-depth knowledge of democracy and how our government works plays an increasingly important role in today’s global economy,” said state Superintendent of Schools Jim Phares. “Both Isaac and Julian will be immersed in the workings of this country. They should be proud of their accomplishment.”
Chosen as alternates to the 2013 merit-based program were Madeline Duarte of Morgantown High School in Monongalia County, and Jacob McCoy of Man High School in Logan County.
The chief educational officer in each state names the delegates from nominations made by teachers and principals. The two West Virginia delegates were chosen with input from a state Department of Education committee. The winners were announced by U.S. Sens. Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin, both D-W.Va. The two West Virginia students will join other delegates from every state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense education system for a week of intensive study of the federal government and the U.S. Senate in particular.
While in Washington the student delegates will attend meetings and briefings with senators and congressional staff, the president, a justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies, an ambassador to the United States and top members of the national media. The students also will tour many of the national monuments and several museums and will stay at the historic Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The leadership program was established in 1962 by Senate Resolution 324. Since then, about 5,000 students have participated in the program. Each student delegate also receives a $5,000 undergraduate college scholarship with encouragement to continue coursework in government, history and public affairs. The scholarships, transportation and all expenses for Washington Week are provided by The Hearst Foundations.
Contact Joey Wiseman, social studies coordinator for the West Virginia Department of Education, at (304) 558-7805, or the Office of Communication at (304) 558-2699 for more information.