Paging all pages: State Sen. Cheryl Pflug offers Olympia experience for Valley students
November 24, 2011 · 11:51 AM
Sen. Cheryl Pflug, R-Maple Valley, invites students ages 14 to 16 to apply to become Senate pages during the upcoming legislative session in Olympia, which runs for 60 days starting January 9.
“The page program provides a wonderful opportunity to learn about our government first hand,” Pflug said. “Watching how the laws you live with everyday are made is an amazing education. For students it can be a life-changing experience. Many of the people who go on to serve in public office get their first taste of policy work as a page. Plus, it’s lots of fun making friends with other teens from all over the state.”
Each student serving as a Senate page is sponsored by a senator. They spend a week in Olympia as paid employees, working a regular business day, delivering messages, handing out documents on the floor, and running other errands. They also attend page school for two hours during the workday, where they learn important concepts about civics and government.
“The highlight of the week is when they write and present their own bills and role-play as legislators in a mock committee hearing.” Pflug said. “My students have said it really gives them a feeling of what it’s like to be a real legislator. I love it when they ask me questions, because it’s exciting to see they’re engaged and interested.”
Students who travel from distant parts of the state can get private housing through host families living in the Olympia area. Pflug urges interested students to apply for the page program as soon as possible because the number of pages will be limited.
To find out more about the page program or apply to be a page sponsored by Pflug, go to http://www.leg.wa.gov/senate/administration/pageprogram/Pages/default.aspx. Be sure to check out the video for a look at what working as a Senate page is really like.
Students may download an application from the site, fill it out and send it to Pflug’s Olympia office: 415 Legislative Building, P.O. Box 40405, Olympia, WA 98504-0405.