U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and David Perdue, R-Ga., have congratulated four Georgia high school students who were selected as delegates or alternates to the 57th annual United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP), which will be held March 2 through 9, 2019, in Washington, D.C.
Patrick Chappel of Columbus, Ga., and Clarke Peoples of Atlanta, have been chosen as delegates in a very competitive selection process to be part of the group of 104 student delegates who will attend the program’s “Washington Week.” Each delegate will also receive a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate study.
While in Washington, D.C., the student delegates will attend meetings and briefings with senators, U.S. House 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. The students will also tour many of the national monuments and several museums.
Chosen as alternates to the 2019 program were Nicklaus Proctor, of Calhoun, Ga., who attends Sonoraville High School, and Brandon Wilson of Lithia Springs, Ga., who attends Lithia Springs High School.
“I’m excited to congratulate and welcome the students selected to participate in this year’s U.S. Senate Youth Program,” said Isakson. “These students’ hard work has paid off, and they are going to get a special glimpse of the federal government during their trip in March. I applaud Patrick and Clarke, as well as our Georgia alternates, Nicklaus and Brandon, on putting their interests into action.”
“Congratulations to Patrick Chappel and Clarke Peoples on being selected for the United States Senate Youth Program, and to Nicklaus Proctor and Brandon Wilson for being chosen as alternates,” said Perdue. “This high honor reflects these students’ dedication to their academics and to their communities. I know they will make Georgia proud as they represent our state as student delegates.”
Chappel, a senior at Columbus High School, serves as chairman of the High School Democrats of Georgia. As president of the Columbus High Young Democrats, he doubled the membership, brought notable speakers to the school, and registered more than 100 students to vote. He was elected president of the Muscogee County Young Democrats and received the Muscogee County Democratic Committee Youth Leadership Award. He plans to study political science in college and build a public policy-centered career.
Peoples, a senior at North Atlanta High School, serves as the president of the student body. Previously, she served as class president in each high school grade. She has participated in the Georgia Governor’s Honors program, the Washington Journalism and Media Conference as a national youth correspondent, and as a summer law intern for Barnes and Thornburg, LLP. Clarke also founded the North Atlanta High School Student Political Association and will be attending Columbia University in the fall. Her long-term goal is to become a lawyer and be involved in criminal justice advocacy.
The chief educational officer in each state selects the delegates after nomination by teachers and principals. This year’s Georgia delegates were designated by Richard Woods, Georgia’s state superintendent of schools.
Each year this extremely competitive merit-based program brings 104 of the most outstanding high school students — two from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity — to Washington, D.C., for an intensive week-long study of the federal government and the people who lead it. The overall mission of the program is to help instill within each class of USSYP student delegates more in-depth knowledge of the American political process and a lifelong commitment to public service. In addition to the program week, The Hearst Foundations provide each student with a $10,000 undergraduate college scholarship with encouragement to continue coursework in government, history and public affairs. Transportation and other expenses for Washington Week are also provided by The Hearst Foundations; no government funds are utilized.
The USSYP was created by S.Res.324 in 1962 and has been sponsored by the Senate and fully funded by The Hearst Foundations since its inception. In addition to outstanding leadership abilities and a strong commitment to volunteer work, the student delegates generally rank academically in the top 1 percent of their states among high school juniors and seniors.