March 10, 2008

Senators Reed, Whitehouse Welcome Rhode Island Student Winners

Rhode Islanders Selected for US Senate Youth Program; Receive $5000 for College

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) welcomed Rhode Island’s two U.S. Senate Youth Program (USSYP) delegates to Washington, D.C. last week. High school students Miranda Cummings of East Providence and David Thibodeau of North Providence were in the nation’s capital for the program’s 46th annual Washington Week. Both students also will receive a $5,000 grant towards their undergraduate college education.

“I commend these students for their academic achievements and leadership in their schools and communities,” said Reed.

“Selection for the Senate Youth Program is an important achievement, and I’m proud that David and Miranda have taken advantage of this opportunity to learn more about their government,” Whitehouse said.

Ms. Cummings, a member of the National Honor Society, is a Student Council member at East Providence High School. She is also the editor of the school newspaper and participates in the French Club and the Drug Intervention Community Educators. Miranda plans to attend Providence College and major in social work.

Mr. Thibodeau is the class president at LaSalle Academy. He is also an academic tutor, student council representative, and newspaper reporter, and he works as a page in the Rhode Island State Senate. At LaSalle, he is a member of the Academic Decathlon Team, New England Math and Calculus League, National Italian Honor Society, and Academic Honor Society. He plans to major in chemistry.

The Senate Youth Program was created in 1962. The program is sponsored by the Senate and has been fully funded by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation since its inception. Each year, 104 students are selected on the basis of merit (two from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity) to participate in USSYP’s week-long, intensive study of the federal government, aimed at fostering a greater understanding of the political process and a strong commitment to public service. To date, more than 4,500 students have participated.


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