‘We the People’ members prepare for state competition12 different teams partaking
Listening closely to the judges, senior Brittny Mikhaiel answers the question given to her. Lopez and her team had to perform a perfected speech of their assigned topic. "I felt really good after district, we luckily had amazing judges and interacted with us and gave us good feedback to be better for state,” Lopez said. Photo Credit: Matthew Laporte
In preparation for Saturday’s state competition, We The People members are finalizing their speeches.
“I’m expecting a very tight competition, it gets more and more competitive every year, it’s tough competition,” AP Government teacher Joseph Juliano said. “I want our team to come out here and put to use all of the hard work we did these six months and to be able to have that moment to get it all out and not regret it.”
Each student has been placed into one of the six different groups or units in which they focus on a certain aspect of the U.S. Constitution or American history.
“Basically, for the first semester, we become highly skilled in that area that we [are put into],” senior Kesler Cervantes said. “All of that knowledge comes to use in our district competition, [which] we have in December where we go against other high schools.”
The members have stayed after school at least once a week to practice their speeches and do follow-ups on their topics. During this time, they answer the judge’s questions from their own knowledge.
“I have a lot of notifications on my phone that pop up news articles for me to read on my own time,” said senior Justine Verstigue. “When my other partners Chris, Hannah and I are all together, we practice answering questions and Mr. Juliano usually helps us practice or we practice with another unit.”
State competition will take place on campus from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and 11 other schools will be participating. The schools that make it to the will attend the national competition in Washington, D.C.
“It’s really weird, a lot if it’s passion, but it also stresses that you don’t want to ramble on too long or and you don’t an important point unsaid,” said Cervantes. “For me personally, it’s excitement, because a lot of the adult figures in my life don’t really take me seriously when I talk about politics and knowing that these people are listening and trying to have a conversation, is a lot of fun.”