On November 29, 30 students from the 21st Senate District took part in State Senator Michael Connelly’s Youth Advisory Council at the DuPage County Administration Building, which gave students a hands-on learning experience about public policy and the legislative process.
"Today, I had the opportunity to engage with some incredible students within the 21st district. I am so proud of my school districts for generating such ambitious individuals,” said Sen. Connelly (R-Naperville). “I hope that today's program provided them with not only the knowledge on how state government works, but also the skills to work together and to respect different opinions.”
Students from Glenbard North, Naperville Central, Naperville North, Neuqua Valley, St. Francis, Wheaton North, and West Chicago Community high schools took part in the Youth Advisory Council.
The program began with a variety of speakers including, Bob Berlin, DuPage County State’s Attorney, Christine Jeffries, President of Naperville Development Partnership, Dan Cronin, DuPage County Chairman, and Warren Dixon, Naperville Township Assessor.
Students then broke into groups to develop ideas for possible state legislation. They then took a popular vote and chose one mock legislative proposal.
That proposal will carry over to the next Youth Advisory Council which will take place in the spring at the Capitol in Springfield. There, the students will participate in a mock committee hearing, where they will discuss their legislative proposal in detail.
“It was encouraging to see these students so engaged in the policy-making process,” said Connelly. “I look forward to meeting with them again in Springfield, where they’ll dig even deeper into their legislative proposal.”