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Warren Chen ’23 Selected to United States Senate Youth Program

The following was taken directly from USSYP official press release.


Washington, D.C. (January 11, 2022) —The United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) announces that high school students Mr. Matthew James Blair and Mr. Warren William Chen will join Senator Jeanne Shaheen and Senator Maggie Hassan in representing New Hampshire during the 60th annual USSYP Washington Week, to be held March 6 — 9, 2022. Matthew Blair of Manchester and Warren Chen of Nashua were selected from among the state’s top student leaders to be part of the 104 national student delegation who will each also receive a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate study. Due to the ongoing pandemic, the 2022 program will be held online, through a comprehensive and highly interactive virtual education and leadership forum.


The USSYP was created by Senate Resolution 324 in 1962 and has been sponsored by the Senate and fully funded by The Hearst Foundations since inception. Originally proposed by Senators Kuchel, Mansfield, Dirksen and Humphrey, the Senate leadership of the day, the impetus for the program as stated in Senate testimony is "to increase young Americans’ understanding of the interrelationships of the three branches of government, learn the caliber and responsibilities of federally elected and appointed officials, and emphasize the vital importance of democratic decision making not only for America but for people around the world.


Each year this extremely competitive merit-based program provides the most outstanding high school students - two from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity - with an intensive week-long study of the federal government and the people who lead it. The overall mission of the program is to help instill within each class of USSYP student delegates more profound knowledge of the American political process and a lifelong commitment to public service. In addition to the program week, The Hearst Foundations provide each student with a $10,000 undergraduate college scholarship with encouragement to continue coursework in government, history and public affairs. All expenses for Washington Week are also provided by The Hearst Foundations; as stipulated in S.Res.324, no government funds are utilized.


Matthew Blair, a senior at Manchester Central High School, serves as the president of the Senior Class. Additionally, he is the editor in chief of his school newspaper, The Little Green, co-captain of the varsity hockey team, drum major for the marching band, and a member of the National Honor Society, National English Honor Society and National Music Honor Society. Matthew is proud of the Face-Off Friends program he created through his hockey team, working with the Choose Love Program, a program designed to teach social and emotional learning skills and character development to create a safer and more loving world. Matthew brought this program to his local Boys and Girls Club for students in third to fifth grades. He is passionate about connecting his interest in politics with his interest in medicine and sees political engagement as an essential part of influencing healthcare policy.


Warren Chen, a junior at Bishop Guertin High School, serves as the communications officer for the Junior Class. Additionally, he has held various student offices since his Freshman year. He is skilled with digital media and technology and enthusiastically volunteered to serve on a student Task Force on Remote Learning when the pandemic hit. Outside of school, Warren is a teacher’s assistant, working with younger students at the Lexington Chinese School. He has won the Eastern Conference of the National Association of Chinese Language Speech Contest twice in a row. Additionally, Warren plays piano both in his free time and for the Bishop Guertin Jazz Band and spends his Saturdays working at Starbucks. Warren is an avid reader and a talented speaker, known for his creative and engaging stories.


Chosen as alternates to the 2022 program were Mr. Matthew S. Pemberton, a resident of Bedford, who attends Bedford High School and Mr. Max Benjamin Aframe, a resident of Hopkinton, who attends Hopkinton High School.


Delegates and alternates are selected by the state departments of education nationwide and the District of Columbia and Department of Defense Education Activity, after nomination by teachers and principals. The chief state school officer for each jurisdiction confirms the final selection. This year’s New Hampshire delegates and alternates were designated by Frank Edelblut, Commissioner of Education.


During the program week, the student delegates will attend online meetings and briefings with senators, the president, a justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies, among others.


In addition to outstanding leadership abilities and a strong commitment to volunteer work, the student delegates rank academically in the top one percent of their states among high school juniors and seniors. Now more than 6,000 strong, alumni of the program continue to excel and develop impressive qualities that are often directed toward public service. Among the many distinguished alumni are: Senator Susan Collins, the first alumnus to be elected U.S. senator; Secretary of Transportation and former Mayor of South Bend Indiana, Pete Buttigieg; former Senator Cory Gardner, the second alumnus to be elected U.S. senator and the first to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives; former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, the first alumnus to be elected governor; former Chief Judge Robert Henry, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit; former Ambassador to West Germany Richard Burt, former presidential advisors Thomas "Mack" McLarty and Karl Rove. Additional notables include former Lt. Governor of Idaho David Leroy, Provost of Wake Forest University Rogan Kersh, military officers, members of state legislatures, Foreign Service officers, top congressional staff, healthcare providers and other university educators.


Members of the U. S. Senate Youth Program 2022 annual Senate Advisory Committee are: Senator Christopher A. Coons of Delaware, Democratic Co-Chair; Senator Susan M. Collins of Maine, Republican Co-Chair; Advisory Members: Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-NM); Senator Jeffrey A. Merkley (D-OR); Senator Tina Smith (D-MN); Senator Mark R. Warner (D- VA); Senator Mike Braun (R-IN); Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV); Senator James M. Inhofe (R-OK); and Senator M. Michael Rounds (R-SD). Each year, the Honorary Co-Chairs of the program are the vice president of the United States and the Senate majority and minority leaders.


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