Four Years in Youth in Government Leads to D.C. Trip
Holy Family senior Kori Lenzmeier, a four-year participant with Holy Family’s delegation to the YMCA-Minnesota Youth in Government program, recently attended the YMCA’s National Advocacy Days in Washington, D.C.
Kori was one of two students selected from a pool of applicants to represent Minnesota as part of the YMCA Youth Advocates Midwest Alliance.
This four-month experience, culminating February 12-15, 2023, at National Advocacy Days in DC, provides practical, real-world experience advocating for policy solutions that help the Y address critical social issues in our three areas of focus: youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility.
Kori, and fellow Minnesotan advocate, Arjun K. from Wayzata High School, advocated for increased funding for civics education, awareness of water safety literacy, and policies to increase the affordability and availability of childcare.
Highlights of the experience were meeting or connecting with the offices of all Minnesota representatives and senators, including the opportunity to sit in the Senate gallery during live sessions.
Kori credits her experience with Youth in Government and the YMCA Advocacy program for developing a deeper understanding of current issues facing governments and citizens, enhancing her skills in difficult conversations where opposing sides may exist, and increasing her openness to other viewpoints and life experiences.
In addition to Youth in Government, Kori participates in Honor Society, Theater, Equality Club, and Math League. She encourages other students to learn more about how their government works and to take advantage of the great opportunities YMCA’s Youth in Government programs offer. She says, “The more hard work and effort you put into your experience, the more opportunities that open for you. But you have to seek those opportunities; they won’t always fall in your lap. I think that’s true of anything, not just Youth in Government.”
Kori’s interest in civics motivated her to take every AP social studies course Holy Family offers. In addition to Youth in Government, she participates in theater, Math League, Equality Club, and Honor Society. And, she’s only getting started. She intends to pursue a major in political science in college as she works toward a career in public policy.