STATE SUPERINTENDENT JACK O’CONNELL SELECTS FRANKLIN HIGH STUDENT AS ONE OF TWO EXEMPLARY HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS FOR 2008 U.S. SENATE YOUTH PROGRAM – LINCOLN HS STUDENT CHOSEN AS ALTERNATE
December 12
   State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell announced today that two remarkable California high school students have been chosen as delegates to the prestigious and highly competitive United States Senate Youth Program.

    Zephanii N’shea Smith, a senior at Franklin High School (Stockton Unified School District) in Stockton, San Joaquin County, and Hayley Elizabeth Campbell, a senior at Palos Verdes High School (Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District) in Palos Verdes, Los Angeles County, were chosen from more than 125 applicants based on their scholastic achievement, leadership qualities, extra-curricular activities, and service to the community.

    “I congratulate these academically talented and politically conscious young people,” O’Connell said. “Their profound commitment to education, community causes, and civic duty makes them a natural choice for this prominent leadership program.”

    Selected to serve as alternates in case either delegate cannot participate in the program are First Alternate Ilan Uri Ben-Meir, a senior at Santa Monica High School (Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District) in Santa Monica, Los Angeles County, and Second Alternate Lange Parks Luntao, a senior at Lincoln High School (Lincoln Unified School District) in Stockton, San Joaquin County.

    A short biography of each of the four students is attached. Photos may be accessed at http://www.cde.ca.gov/nr/av/vi/.

    The delegates will participate in a week of intensive study of the federal government as guests of the U.S. Senate from March 1-8, 2008, in Washington, D.C.

     The U.S. Senate Youth Program is an annual scholarship competition funded by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation and endorsed by the U.S. Senate. Each state and the District of Columbia select two high school juniors or seniors to participate in the program. The Foundation pays all expenses for the delegates, including transportation, hotel, and meals. In addition, each of the delegates will receive a $5,000 college scholarship from the Foundation.

 The students will personally experience their national government in action, hear major policy addresses by senators, cabinet members, and officials from federal agencies, as well as participate in a meeting with a U.S. Supreme Court justice.

Students must be nominated by their high school principal to participate in the program. A selection committee from the California Department of Education reviewed eligible nominees who submitted the required paperwork. After a rigorous review process, O’Connell selected the awardees based on the following criteria: the quality of the application, high academic achievement, excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to speak well, knowledge of American government and U.S. history, involvement in school and community activities, and demonstrated qualities of leadership.

The four students will be recognized by the State Board of Education during its meeting on January 10, 2008 in Sacramento. For more information on the program, please visit http://www.cde.ca.gov/eo/in/us/. For more information about the students, download the attached document.












765REL07-164_SenateYouth_12-11-07.doc
Posted: 12/12/2007 10:05:58 AM