groupSCRANTON, May 27, 2015 – State Senator John Blake today hosted 11 high school seniors from 7 local school districts for a legislative competition as the final chapter of this year’s Student Ambassador Program.

The Student Ambassador Program gives high school seniors from each high school in the 22nd Senate District an opportunity to represent their school in a number of meetings, tours and government networking events designed to help participants gain a better understanding of all levels of government and to develop critical thinking and leadership skills with an emphasis on public service.

“The Student Ambassador Program provides a great opportunity for local high school seniors to gain a better understanding of local, state and federal government operations. The student ambassadors also benefit from invaluable field experience in our public sector through our five-month program,” Blake said. “As we saw here today with the very thoughtful and professional presentations offered by our graduating seniors, the future of our region, our state and our country will be in good hands as these students of today become leaders of tomorrow.”

Today’s event, held at Marywood University, gave the student ambassadors an opportunity to make a legislative presentation to a panel of judges that included Sen. Blake, state Representative Eddie Day Pashinski and two legislative staffers.

For the presentation, the student ambassadors were tasked with putting themselves in the shoes of a state senator and proposing a new law of interest to them regarding transportation, education, emergency preparedness, environmental protection or human services. Each presentation was scored by the four judges on the substance of the proposal as well as on the strength of the argument.  Senator Blake will be awarding the top four presenters scholarship assistance for their post secondary academic pursuits.

The students scoring the highest in this year’s competition were Matthew Klucher from Abington Heights School District; Brian Swatt from Lakeland School District; Cassandra Semyon from Riverside School District; and Alexander Fried from Abington Heights School District.

Students interested in participating in Senator Blake’s Student Ambassador Program next year can begin applying in September.  All information related to the application can be obtained at their schools. Student ambassadors are nominated and recommended for participation in the program through an interview process with their school administrators, teachers or guidance counselors.

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