JSA goes to Washington D.C. for annual Winter Congress


On Feb. 23, Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School students who are members of Junior Statesmen of America took a weekend trip down to Washington D.C. to participate in the annual Winter Congress where groups of students from different schools in the region create bills and come together to debate them.
Prior to the actual event, students put themselves into teams to create their bills, which are all sent to the organizers of Winter Congress where the bills are either approved or denied. If the bill is approved, it would be formally debated by the students at the conference on which it should be passed or not. Along with the debates, the convention also hosts tours of the capitol and its monuments and political activism fairs, where students can fight apathy and get involved in other political programs.
This year, 24 students from SPFHS participated in Winter Congress with seniors Diamond Terrell and Nina Halberstadter, and juniors Mia Cimino and Vadim Gorbaty’s bill being approved to be debated and freshmen David Schulman, Elisa Laurenzano, Emily Herman and Lauren McGovern’s group bill approved and passed after debate.
“Winter Congress is genuinely so fun,” treasurer of JSA, Cimino said. “This year I got to debate, over see a committee of nearly 100 people, and watch others passionately engage in the legislative process. It’s fun to see what other students think about different political topics and bills, and what gets a bill passed or failed within the committee.”