HMC: A Capitol (Hill) Success

Michelle Santos

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As usual, Latin kids get hyped up when talking about the U.S. Congress. The dynamic duo, Mr. Windus and Ms. Hennessy, smoothly carried out the trip for the most part, excluding some minor, accidental detours. The trip included Gianna Miller, Eleanor Ruscitti, Maddie Hoffman, Jessica Mora, Bryce Tuttle, Meredith Lostaglio, Erika Marks, Nydia Monroy, Wade Pryor, Jessie Berger, Molly Norris, Kristin Heglin, Isabela Artola, Crystal Lou, Bianca Stelian, Yulissa Arroyo, Rufino Cacho, Natalie Malek, Alexis Lopez, Frani O’Toole, Becca Andruzzi, Olivia Schultz, Grace Ebach, and myself. As we all arrived at the luxurious Sheraton Hotel via Boston’s public train system and dressed in western business attire, we had to be prepared for the first of many committee sessions.


Most people aren’t quite sure what the difference is between Model Congress and Model UN, and,  in reality, they are quite similar. Model Congress, however, offers more variations of committee styles such as simulating the West Wing, the CIA, a country, house, or senate. Delegates in a Senate or House committee have the pleasure to participate in full House sessions where they meet with delegates from other committees who are part of the same party (democrat or republican). They discuss and debate bills, amendments, and platforms. During these full sessions, there is the occasional lobbyist rally: the lobbyist position, in fact, has captured the interest of many Latin students. This year, we had four students act as lobbyists, each one crafting persuasive speeches and engaging in some backroom deals. We also had students participate in special committees—whether it was at the Constitutional Convention drafting a constitution that changed the structure of government, or running campaigns for Senators with the West Wing, Latin students took up a variety of roles.


The Harvard Model Congress  event hosts over a thousand teenagers from many states including Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, and several countries including the UAE and Honduras. This was the biggest year for enrollment at HMC yet. Another attraction of the trip is that it offers students a chance to tour Boston college campuses—students this year travelled to Harvard and Tufts on Friday morning.  While the weather was dreary, the trips were certainly enjoyable. Another special HMC event is Saturday night, when Latin students dressed up in distressed business attire to attend the wonderfully entertaining congressional ball.


Another memorable  time at HMC came to a close too quickly,  and the Latin School headed on a plane ride back to Chicago. Though two days of missed work had to be made up in the span of 4 hours, the trip was certainly worth it. Shout out to Bryce Tuttle for winning best delegate as a Lobbyist and to our three seniors whom we will miss greatly, Olivia Schultz, Grace Ebach, and Becca Andruzzi.