by Akiva Cooper (’18)

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Twelve MTA students boarded the bus after davening on Tuesday for Model Congress and, incredibly, nine returned with awards! The successful day started off with a keynote speech by a New York congressman, Bruce Blakeman. He presented to all the “representatives” on the topic of encouraging the future generation to learn and participate in politics. Invigorated and inspired, the students headed off to their respective committee sessions.

Yeshiva League Model Congress, a competition hosted by HAFTR High School, is a model congress competition where students from various yeshiva high schools learn the basics of being a congressman/woman. Students were split up into 15 committees, all of which are actually represented on Capitol Hill. Students were required to author, and attempt to pass, a bill within the topic of their committee. Students were required to present their bill, and were encouraged to support or condemn other students’ bills, by speaking publicly in front of their committee, giving them the opportunity to hone their public speaking skills.

After a full day that was informative and exciting, the the program concludes with closing ceremonies and award presentations. Each committee chair, a HAFTR senior, and in some cases a junior, was given the job of awarding three of the best delegates from their committee. First place delegate, in each committee, was to receive a gavel and the title “Best Delegate.” Second and third place delegates received a certificate and an honorable mention. As each committee chair called up the best delegates and honorable mentions, MTA was clearly ubiquitous. Out of the 15 committees, MTA students went up to receive an award 9 times. Yosef Lemel (’17), Yisroel Chaim Sabel (’17), Dovid Schwartz (’17), Akiva Cooper (’18), Chaim Weinstein (’18), and Yonatan Chudnoff (’19) all received honorable mentions. Ben Zion Zuckier (’17), Zeve Kornwasser (’18) and Meir Uretsky (’18) received “Best Delegate” awards.

On the bus ride home, after making the traditional MTA Model Congress 7/11 run, students enjoyed their slurpees and victories all the way back to school. Next year’s captains, Meir Uretsky and Zeve Kornwasser, were announced.

 

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