As delegates gained more knowledge about government, learned about their ability to lead their peers and how involved they were, they also learned who they are when it comes to meeting new people in new environments — whether they realize it yet or not.
“(I learned) the government is more complicated than I thought,” said McKenzie Hermanson, Seattle. “I ran for…coroner and House of Representatives. You really have to put yourself out there to get noticed.”
All Girls Staters now recognize the names of those who stood out among the crowd and who will be remembered after the session. This may not have been their intention, but these girls were the ones to run for the highest positions, such as our new governor, Ruhama Teneda.
Others might be remembered for their amazing performance in the talent show, joining every discussion in the Leadership Class or for having the brightest smile and most friendly conversations.
These delegates who come to mind are the ones who wanted to be involved throughout the week. They made the most of the opportunities presented to them and will leave Girls State with more confidence to lead their communities.
The leaders of Girls State learned what it is like to operate in a governmental environment. This new experience can be applied to the delegates’ communities and schools.
Those who came to Girls State wanting the most out of every presentation, campaign, cheer and more are the ones to apply this mindset to their everyday lives.
Being in an auditorium full of young women with a passion to succeed inspires one to go out and be the woman to make the difference, just as nearly every speaker suggested this week.
Delegates had the chance to see life as a candidate for office, campaign for a new position or see someone else run for the same spot and win. No matter how the cookie crumbled, everyone was able to experience life in government on a smaller scale.
Now, delegates can return home more informed about the state and nation’s operations. Some can finally join in adults’ conversations about politics.
Since the presentations, speakers and classes centered on political officials or topics, all can reflect upon this new political experience.
“I learned a lot about politics, how the government works and how difficult it is to put yourself out there,” said Cassidy Anderegg, Seattle. “I did not (run for anything). I wish I would’ve run for something just to get more out of the experience.”
The members of the Sacajawea Scroll observed that the intentions of Girls State include: leaving more knowledgeable about the state and federal government, gaining qualities of leadership and staying involved within schools and communities.
If these are not what came from Girls State due to the lack of participation, choosing to be a follower or ignoring the messages from counselors or speakers, then these delegates will return home with something different than the rest.
Some of these girls may be motivated after seeing drive in others, so they will work to be a leader back home.
“(I learned) to get yourself out there… and to keep trying. Learn from your failures,” said Madyson Gilbertson, Cleveland.
There are also those who came because they heard it looks good on college resumes. One can hope these expectations were exceeded after taking the chance to be members of Girls State.
All in all, delegates are returning home after learning something this week. Now is the time to reflect upon the experiences of Girls State and improve as individuals and as communities.
Keep in touch with the new lifelong friends, and remember to use the connections made this week so we become the ones to make a difference during our lifetime.