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Twenty-three Orono students in grades 8-12 participated in the 63rd Model Assembly Session of the Minnesota YMCA Youth in Government program January 5-8.
Local students debated bills, passed proposals and sat on the jury for court cases. More than half of the delegation spent the weekend in the newly-renovated State Capitol, as well as in the new Senate Building and State Office Building.
Orono High School junior Andy Baran was elected to serve as President of the Knutsen Senate next year. Junior Caroline Koehl will serve as Speaker of the Sanford House. Junior Jane Guidera will be the Steering Committee Chair/SCEO Director.
“I was continually impressed throughout the entire Youth in Government weekend of the pose, character and engagement of Orono students,” said Orono Delegation Director Katie Zaccaro. “They continue to uphold and represent Orono as a District of Character and, for that, I am extremely grateful.”
Minnesota YMCA Youth in Government is a youth-led, experiential learning opportunity that involves 2,500 middle school and high school students each year. It is a nationwide program, active in nearly 40 states. Across the country almost 25,000 students attend state Youth in Government conferences each year, with 3,300 adult volunteers and YMCA staff serving as advisors.