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MPISD – News

Mount Pleasant area CSLP participants


Kelly Cowan

MPHS students complete Congressional Student Leadership Program

Rep. John Ratcliffe’s Congressional Student Leadership Program (CSLP) kicked off on January 22nd for high school sophomores and juniors across Texas’ 4th District for the 2019-2020 school year. It marks the fourth year of the program, which has expanded to include four physical meeting locations in Rockwall, Mount Pleasant, Texarkana, and Sherman. Students selected to represent Mount Pleasant High School included Aaliyah Avellaneda, Connelly Cowan, Isabella Greco, Taylor Hubbs, Taryn Thurman, and Brooke Vaughn. 

The objectives of the Congressional Student Leadership Program included:

  • Allowing future leaders to engage with their congressman and staff, and to learn about the role of the federal government and functions of a congressional office.
  • Encouraging critical thinking through the identification of issues in the community, and the evaluation of the role that government plays in addressing such concerns.
  • Developing analytical writing abilities and public speaking abilities.
  • Fostering relationships with peers across Texas’ 4th District.

The participants met in-person at Northeast Texas Community College in January and February for sessions that included educational lectures, research of legislative issues, and interactive group projects. They completed the program online when NTCC was closed due to COVID-19. Before the closure, they assigned participants to committees such as judicial, ways and means, veterans affairs, and education. Their final project included writing a bill for their appointed committee using proper formatting, securing co-sponsors for their proposal, and submitting a video presentation of their proposed legislation. Participants received a certificate upon the successful completion of the program.