Senator Fowler Welcomes High School Students to State Capitol for Student Advisory Council

Southern Illinois high school students were given a taste of the legislative process at the State Capitol Wednesday by Senator Dale Fowler, who held his annual Student Advisory Council (SAC).

“This is one of my favorite events and it was great to have the students back at the State Capitol this year. We haven’t been able to host them in Springfield for several years due to COVID and capitol renovations,” said Senator Fowler. “We wanted to give the students of my district an opportunity to see their state capitol and to create a unique experience for them.”

Senator Fowler welcomed Lt. Governor Julliana Stratton, Illinois Senate Republican Leader John Curran and Events and Engagement Director Lori Yates to speak with students at the Capitol.

“The State Capitol is beautiful and breathtaking,” said Eldorado High School student Hannah Farmer. “It is such cool opportunity. It’s not an opportunity that everyone gets every day to meet your Lieutenant Governor and all of these cool speakers, so it has been really cool.”

Senator Fowler’s SAC is a two-part series. High school students came together in the 59th District in the fall at Southern Illinois University to draft bill ideas to debate during the Spring council.

“I joined this council to know more about politics and have a broader understanding of state government,” said Vienna High School student Gabrielle Buretz. “You get to learn more, and it widens your scope on everyday life. I think it is good for young people to get another understanding because it will help you when you are old enough to vote and know what to look for.”

During the Spring SAC, students are assigned into different legislative roles such as citizen proponent/opponent, lobbyist proponent/opponent, senators, and press/media to debate their proposed legislation in a mock committee hearing.

Schools in attendance at this year’s council include: Eldorado High School, Cairo High School, Cobden High School, Hardin County High School, Vienna High School, Goreville High School, Harrisburg High School, Cairo Elementary School, and Goreville Elementary School.

Refreshments and lunch for the Youth Advisory Councils were provided by Meridian Health Plan of Illinois.

Dale Fowler

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