The Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders

Winner takes all: Students succeed at state competition

in ARS News/Showcase by
Photo courtesy of Ms. Abby Williams

This past weekend the top Youth and Government qualifiers from all across the state of Texas competed at the 70th annual Texas Youth and Government State Competition held in the Renaissance Austin Hotel. Youth and Government is a competition where students model the Texas government and compete against other students to earn various awards. The ARS Youth and Government Delegation took home several awards as both a group and individuals.

Here is a list of the awards. List provided by the ARS Youth and Government club sponsors, Ms. Jill DiCuffa and Ms. Abby Williams:

1) ARS is a Premier Delegation, meaning:

  • All registrations and paperwork are complete
  • All members attend all section meetings and competitions
  • All adult sponsors sign up for and complete our chaperone assignments (monitor activities  and competition, chaperone the dances and social events)
  • No members violate any of the Youth and Government Code of Conduct (we are one of the few schools that has never had anyone sent home from the competition)

2)  Distinguished Delegates:

  • A VERY FEW participants out of the hundreds in each section of the competition are recognized for their outstanding efforts.
    • Julie Apagya Bonney – distinguished delegate – State Affairs
    • Willow Dalehite / Nettie Comerford – Print media Distinguished Delegates
    • Maddy Schell / Ezra Morales – Social Media Distinguished Delegates

3)  County Court Awards

  • The top 10 teams in the entire state are recognized because their evaluations and scores are outstanding
    • Attorney Team of Kassandra Arana / Vania Neri and witnesses Alia Segura, Elena Gonzalez, Annabel Martinez, and Savannah Wallace were named the #3 County Court team in the state
    • Attorney Team of Nishi Patel / Almina Orbach and witnesses Sage O’brien, Doron Pedahzur, Alexis Miller, and Nicole Ramirez were named the  #1 !!!! County Court team in the entire state of Texas!

4)  State elected officers

  • Participants vote to elect officers that will then organize and host the District and State Conferences for next year.
    • Maddy Schell – Elected Social Media Editor-in-Chief (State Officer!!)
    • Willow Dalehite – Elected Print Media Editor-in-Chief (State Officer!!)

5)  Overall Outstanding Club Leader

  • New this year, adults who were monitoring each section, as well as all other social activities were asked to watch out for individual students who exemplified all the outstanding characteristics and ideals of Youth and Government.  These students had to not only be outstanding in their individual section, but also in all other elements of the weekend.  We are really proud to announce this year’s Outstanding Club Leader
    • Emily Gentry

For more information on the competition please visit the YMCA Texas Youth and Government website.

Ezra Morales is well rounded, hard working senior and Managing Editor for The Polaris Press. You can catch him running for cross country, playing soccer, or working at the craft store and Trans Student Educational Resources. He is passionate about changing the world and making schools safer for the LGBTQ+ community.

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