A national nonprofit, the Junior Statesmen of America program encourages teens interested in politics, government, foreign affairs, the law and education to create clubs and political awareness events on their campuses.
Hannah, 14, joined her school’s club this academic year on a whim but loved the program so much she plans to study law and politics in college and will attend summer school in Washington, D.C., through the Junior Statesmen of America organization.
The Camarillo teen will spend three weeks at Georgetown University, where she will take college level courses in American government and speech. She will also participate in debates and meet speakers from the U.S. government and the media.
Hannah previously visited the nation’s capital during a family vacation and said she is excited to experience college life near Capitol Hill.
“It’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before because you get to stay in the dorms at this renowned university,” Hannah said. “I’m going to gain a lot of independence.”
Hannah is already an independent thinker, a trait she exercises each Friday at her school’s Junior Statesmen of America club meetings.
Club members discuss current event issues that are political hot topics across the nation.
Though students may fall on either side of the issue, Hannah said the members are respectful of each other’s beliefs.
“Everyone in the club is pretty open, and nobody is going to say, ‘Oh, you shouldn’t believe that,’” Hannah said.
The CineMagic and Junior Lifeguard volunteer said the informal debates are educational and interesting because she learns new things from hearing other people’s arguments.
It’s something she’s looking forward to this summer, along with dozens of other teens from different parts of the country.
“ It’s amazing how many kids are interested in politics, and you wouldn’t realize that on an everyday basis,” Hannah said.
A student-athlete—she runs track and cross country—Hannah received a scholarship from the Junior Statesmen of America. She still needs to raise about $3,500 to attend the summer school.
The Kurowski family asks anyone willing to make a donation to send a check to Admissions Director, The Junior Statesmen Summer School, 800 S. Claremont St., Ste. 202 San Mateo, CA 94402.
Donations should include a note that says Hannah Kurowski is the intended beneficiary.