High school students eligible for Senate Youth program

Colorado Senators Wayne Allard and Ken Salazar announced that the United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) has begun its statewide selection process. The two Colorado students will join 102 other delegates March 7-14, 2009, for the program’s 47th annual Washington Week.

The USSYP was created by Senate Resolution 324 in 1962 as stated in supporting Senate testimony from that year, “to increase young Americans’ understanding of the interrelationships of the three branches of government, the caliber and responsibilities of federally elected and appointed officials, and the vital importance of democratic decision making not only for America but for people around the world.”

Since that time, more than 4,600 students have participated in this unique leadership program. Each year, this program of the United States Senate brings two students from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity to Washington to experience an intensive week-long program educational program about the workings of the Senate and the federal government overall. USSYP is fully funded by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation — no government funds are utilized.

In addition to outstanding leadership abilities and a strong commitment to volunteer service, the students rank academically in the top one percent of their states. They continue to excel and develop impressive qualities that are often directed toward public service. Among the many distinguished former program delegates are Senator Susan Collins of Maine, the first program delegate elected to the Senate; Chief Judge Robert Henry, U.S. Court of Appeals; former Ambassador to West Germany Richard Burt; former Presidential Advisor’s Karl Rove and Thomas “Mack” McLarty. Additional distinguished alumni are former Lt. Governor of Idaho David LeRoy, U.S. Attorney for New Jersey Christopher Christie, Foreign Service officers, military officers, members of state legislatures, top congressional staff, healthcare providers and university educators.

Each of the 104 student delegates will receive a $5,000 undergraduate college scholarship, in addition to the all-expenses paid trip to our nation’s capital.

The student delegates will visit Capitol Hill, the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department, the Supreme Court and other historic sites in Washington. They will meet with Senators, cabinet officers, government leaders and policy-makers.

The delegate selection is administered by each state’s chief school officer in cooperation with high school principals. Delegates must be junior or senior elected student officers for the 2008-2009 academic year and reside in the state where they attend school. Eligibility considerations may also be made for student representatives elected or selected (selected by a panel, commission or board) to district, regional or state-level civic or educational organizations.

Each student must be a permanent resident of the United States and currently enrolled in a public or private secondary school located in the state (including for these purposes the District of Columbia) in which either one of his or her parents or guardians legally resides. Exceptions to the residency rule are made for the Department of Defense Education Activity and for states with schools under Interstate Compacts.

Names of students selected will be formally announced mid-December. Since application deadlines vary by state, interested students in Colorado should contact their high school principal or the state-level selection administrator indicated below:

Ms. Judy Haugh
Senate Youth Program Coordinator
Colorado Department of Education
201 East Colfax Avenue, Room No. 400
Denver, CO 80203-1799
(303) 866-6651

Haugh_J@cde.state.co.us

The United States Senate Youth Program received notification that the Colorado selection deadline is: October 10, 2008.

The 2009 program brochure with detailed rules, selection process and the annual yearbook may be accessed on the USSYP Web site www.ussenateyouth.org.