Photo courtesy of JulieAnne Fossett
Becton Junior JulieAnne Fossett will be representing Becton Regional High School at the 72nd American Legion Auxiliary Jersey Girls State at Georgian Court University from June 23 to June 28.
The program focuses on the importance of encouraging today’s youth to participate and be active politically in the country as a part of one’s civic duties. In addition, the program hopes to have students attain a better understanding of how the American system of government functions.
Select students are nominated by their teachers and then they are interviewed by a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, who has the final say on who will be the delegates, as well as the alternates. JulieAnne was informed of her nomination by her guidance counselor, Mr. Caprio, in March.
Girls are selected based off criteria, which includes community involvement, leadership, extracurricular activities, and academic achievements. The junior is a member of her high school’s track and field team, Paw Club, and Key Club, and has earned a spot on the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society.
“I’ve heard that it is a very interactive experience and that it is something that I will cherish forever. People have told me that they still keep in touch with people they have met there, which I am very excited for,” said the Becton delegate.
Moreover, each delegate that successfully completes Girls or Boys State receives three credits that can be used toward any public or private university that is located in New Jersey.
While at the program, each attendee becomes a citizen of an assigned city and must register to be a part of one of his or her political parties, either the Nationals or the Federals. Each girl is required to vote for one of the candidates who is running for office and learn about her platform.
“It seems like a fun and interesting experience to be able to attend Girls State since I’ve never done anything like it before,” said JulieAnne.
The honor student said that although currently, she does not see herself pursuing a career in politics, she thinks that this experience may allow her rethink that.
“I think Girls State will help me break out of my shell a little bit, meet new people, and help me learn about the government in an interactive way rather than in a classroom setting,” she said.