American Legion Post 104 selects attendees for Boys State/Girls State

Taftville — American Legion Post 104 just completed a two-week-long series of interviews of Norwich area high school juniors who will be attending Boys State and Girls State in June.  Working closely with the guidance counselors of Ledyard High School, Norwich Free Academy and Norwich Technical School, each candidate was interviewed by the post's director of the program Alvin Butters. Butters has worked more than 20 years in building this leadership program to what it is today. This year, eight young men and eight young women will attend at the post's expense.

Boys State will be held at Eastern Connecticut State College June 24-29, while Girls State will be conducted at C.W. Post College June 26-30. Candidates must demonstrate strong academic performance, excellent interpersonal skills, and leadership and oratorical skills.

Selectees from Ledyard High School include Jacob Money, Drew Riffle, Nathan Grabbe, Rayne Santigo, Rachel Kane, Chelsea Darling-Watt, Madison Jackson, and Erica deAndrade.  Those selected from Norwich Free Academy are: Nathan Jean, Carter Ward, Sean O'neill, Alexandra Tudisca, Guerrie Guerrier, and Kathleen Kelly. Selectees from Norwich Technical School include Steven Allaby, Cody Kersteter, Erin McBride and Wendalis Landran-Bianchi.

Each selectee will be in consideration for the prestigious Samsung Scholarship that could run as high as $20,000.

The alumni of Connecticut Boys and Girls State represent a "Who's-Who in Connecticut" and includes former Connecticut Gov. Bill O'Neil and former Sen. Joe Lieberman. The post was pleased to receive a message from Lieberman noting his excitement that this year's program continues to grow with a greater number of young men and women attending.

Both programs focus on a week of "learn-by-doing government symposium."  Hundreds of Connecticut statewide delegates will gather to form cities and towns, to elect municipal and state government officials, to organize a two-party Senate and House, and to elect a governor and other officials.  Many counselors, experts and political leaders will serve as resource. throughout the week. One of the important events will be the preparation of proposed policies that will be written and sent to the Connecticut legislature for consideration.

Boys State/Girls State is a statewide program that is conducted in all states except Hawaii.

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