Spirited Success for Chatham at AIC Model Congress
The accolades just keep on coming for Chatham High School’s Model Congress Team. Our 2016-2017 team experienced continuing success at American International College’s (AIC) Model Congress held in Springfield, MA January 5th through 7th. Our delegates passed every bill they proposed, sophomore Althea Brennan took third place overall, and the team brought home the Team Spirit Award for the fourth year in a row.
Now in its 77th year, AIC’s Model Congress brought thirteen high school teams from across the Northeast to the college to debate and pass legislation in a competitive simulation of the United States Congress.
Chatham students drafted three bills which they presented at this year’s event: the Forfeiture Endangers American Rights (F.E.A.R.) Act (with Jack McEachern and Kate Schassler as the primary delegates), the Drinkable water Resources In Public Schools (D.R.I.P.S.) Act (with Destiny Hull and Althea Brennan as primary delegates), and the Save a Life Act (with Geetika Verma and Crystal Baneni as primary delegates). They were able to maneuver all three bills past the difficult committee hearings and sessions and onto the floor of the House and Senate, with debating on the bills exceeding one-and-a-half hours each. Their hard work paid off with a hat trick for Chatham, with all three bills ultimately passing the House and Senate to become “law.”
“We were pleased in achieving the success of having our bills gain this level of accomplishment. Such evidence shows our student’s commitment to be fully engaged throughout their preparation and during the competition,” said social studies teacher Mark Pearson, who co-advises the team.
At the awards ceremony following the competition, the judges ranked team member Althea Brennan as the third place delegate out of the 150 students who participated. Along with being recognized as one of this year’s most outstanding delegates, Althea was awarded a four-year half-scholarship to AIC.
AIC also presented Chatham with the only team award it offers, the Team Spirit Award, reserved for the team with the most motivation, enthusiasm, cooperation, and collegiality. This is the fourth year in a row that Chatham has brought home this coveted award.
Chatham’s 2016-17 Model Congress Team is Crystal Baneni, Althea Brennan, Coco Carmichael, Destiny Hull, Joseph Hunter, Sam Kirschner, Eliza Klingler, Jack McEachern, Pamela Mountain, Gaby Neven, Madeline Powers, Kate Schassler, Margot Schassler, Liliana Simon, Jenna Skype, Geetika Verma, and Lily Witazeck with advisors Mark Pearson, Peter Cook, and chaperon Jennifer Dilorio. They would like to thank Superintendent Cheryl Nuciforo, Principal John Thorsen, and the Board of Education for their continued support of this program.
You can learn more about the AIC Model Congress by watching this news video featuring Chatham student Destiny Hull: http://www.westernmassnews.com/story/34207871/77th-annual-model-congress-at-aic