Iowa students selected for U.S. Senate Youth Program
Two Iowa students have been selected as delegates to the 57th annual United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) that will be held from March 2-9 in Washington, D.C.
Kevin Drahos, a senior at Linn-Mar High School in Marion, and James Meng, a senior at Valley High School in West Des Moines, were chosen as the Iowa delegates for participation in the 104-member student delegation during the week-long government and leadership education program in the nation’s capital.
The Iowa delegates and alternates were selected by a committee at the Iowa Department of Education. Selection is based on outstanding ability and demonstrated leadership qualities, a strong commitment to volunteer work, and a top 1 percent academic ranking among Iowa’s high school juniors and seniors.
Established in 1962, sponsored by the Senate and fully funded by The Hearst Foundations, the program is designed to give young Americans a working knowledge of American political life, increase the students’ understanding of the interrelationships of the three branches of government, and help instill knowledge of the American political process and a lifelong commitment to public service. The annual program admits two student leader delegates from each state, the District of Columbia, and the Department of Defense Education Activity.
In addition to the all-expense-paid intensive education and leadership program week, each delegate receives a $10,000 undergraduate college scholarship with encouragement to continue coursework in government, history and public affairs.
During their visit to Washington, D.C., student delegates will attend meetings and briefings with senators, members of the House of Representatives, Congressional staff, the president, a justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies, an ambassador to the United States and senior members of the national media, and have opportunity for in-depth question and answer sessions. This year, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst is one of the senate co-chairs for the USSYP senate advisory committee.