Columns

Blaine’s Bulletin: Back to School

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Washington, August 23, 2019 | comments

As summer begins to wind down, students across the Third Congressional District of Missouri are heading back-to-school for an exciting year filled with learning and growth. Our students are the future of this great nation, and I am constantly blown away by their accomplishments.

This spring, I had the honor of congratulating more than 9,000 graduates from high schools across the district. There are few prouder moments in a young person’s life than graduation, and I wish them all the best as they begin the rest of their lives. Many of those graduates are extending their education at colleges and universities, but for some, a four-year school is not the right choice. Thankfully, last year President Trump signed into law the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, which provides students and workers across the nation the opportunity to choose the educational path that gives them the best chance to succeed and help our communities grow. We all have different professional aspirations and it’s time for our education system to recognize and support all options.

We also had five high school students who accepted offers of appointment to the United States military Academies and are starting this fall. Max Greener and Sarah Murray accepted offers of appointment to the United States Military Academy West Point. Trevor Kelly and Emma Westerhold accepted their offers of appointment to the United States Naval Academy, and Levi Mertens accepted his offer of appointment to the United States Air Force Academy. These young people are making an important commitment by agreeing to put their fellow Americans before themselves. We are all grateful for their choice to serve our country. 

Each year, the Congressional Art Competition provides an opportunity for high school artists from the third district of Missouri to demonstrate their talents. This year, my office received spectacular entries from nearly 20 students with the winner being named as Gabrielle Miller, a senior at Fort Zumwalt North High School. Gabrielle’s artwork is a wonderful representation of one of Missouri’s most iconic landmarks and is currently hanging in the United States Capitol. To the thousands of Americans who walk by it every day, it serves as a reminder of the incredible talent and promise our students hold.

Not only do our students showcase their immense artistic talents, but their scientific talents as well. This year, the Owensville STEM team won the national Samsung Solve for Tomorrow competition, creating an inventive door-lock prototype designed to keep students and teachers safe at school. With amazing high school students like Owensville’s Paige, Jonah and Trey, the future of STEM is bright and classrooms across Missouri can provide a safer learning environment.

It is an honor to represent such bright and talented students. Of course, their dreams cannot be realized without the dedication of Missouri’s educators. They put countless hours into preparing their classrooms and curriculum to ensure our children get the best education possible.  As the school season begins please join me in thanking the teachers and educators in our communities and wishing our students a wonderful school year!

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