Sixty-four high school juniors and seniors from the 26th Senate District gathered on Zoom this week for State Senator Dan McConchie’s 2021-2022 Youth Advisory Council. Students from Adlai E. Stevenson, Barrington, Carmel Catholic, Dundee Crown, Lake Zurich, Libertyville, Mundelein, and Wauconda participated in the two-hour virtual event.
“It was a pleasure to host this bright and engaging group of students,” said Sen. McConchie. “While I wish we could have met face-to-face, our online advisory council provided for a productive exchange of ideas. Students learned about possible careers in public service and the value of being engaged in the process. This was a sharp group of future leaders.”
Guest speakers included Chicago’s WTTW political reporter Amanda Vinicky, who spoke about her role coving the legislature, and Algonquin Village President Debby Sosine, who talked about the path that led her to a public service career in local government. Students also heard from lobbyist and former State Senator Pamela Althoff, who shared personal stories about her experience as a legislator and the transition to becoming a lobbyist.
Barrington High School junior Julia Tallungan said, “I believe many individuals learn too late in their life how impactful local, state, and federal politics can be, and having sessions like the youth council help enlighten students to the actions they can take. It is also inspiring to have adults who want to pass on their knowledge and work with students.”
The students will convene with Sen. McConchie again in the spring of 2022, and together they will take a policy proposal and hold a mock hearing and bill debate to simulate the steps in the legislative process.