Carrollton High School student Kara Berrey shadowed Representative Joe Don McGaugh on Tuesday, Feb. 18 as part of the annual 4-H Legislative Academy. The following day Brunswick High School student Michelle Kahn shadowed Rep. McGaugh on Feb. 19 as a member of Missouri Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Legislative Shadow Project.

Missouri 4-H youth representatives from 11 different counties gathered at the State Capitol in Jefferson City from February 17th through the 19th to share their stories and experiences with legislators, commodity groups, and state agency leaders. The goal of the Legislative Academy is to strengthen relationships between Missouri 4-H and key lawmakers and donors, and for youth participants to acquire skills in legislative advocacy.

The FCCLA Shadowing Project’s Mission is to give students of Missouri public schools the appropriate skills and knowledge to become responsible members of society. The program encourages exploring career options within public service and practicing effective communication skills with legislators. Shadowing legislators provides students the opportunity to gain insight into the legislative process and the ways in which in impacts family, work and community issues.

“It was an honor to have Kara and Michelle as my shadow this week. Both of them are incredibly smart young women with very bright futures ahead of them,” said Rep. McGaugh. “Educating eager, young minds about the inner-workings of state government is vital to securing Missouri’s future. These students are our future.”

Story courtesy of Stephen Nittler, Legislative Assistant to Representative Joe Don McGaugh