Mt. Abe’s Moody to represent Vt. at Senate program in Washington

BRISTOL — A Mount Abraham Union High School senior was selected from a pool of Vermont high school students to represent the state at a nationwide conference in Washington, D.C., this spring.
Isabelle Moody of Monktonand a Brattleboro student will form Vermont’s delegation to the United States Senate Youth Program, a conference created by the federal government in 1962 for exceptional students interested in careers in public service.
Moody said she’s not sure what to expect from the program, but said she loves the capital and is excited to visit again.
“I hope to enjoy my time networking with other high school juniors and seniors that are interested in government and international relations,” she said. “They will all be political nerds and that’s exciting.”
Moody said she first heard about the USSYP through her guidance counselor, who encouraged her to apply. The application process for the program was an arduous one, and included writing a speech incorporating a quote by John F. Kennedy, procuring letters of recommendation and doing an in-person interview at the Vermont Statehouse.
Conferees are also awarded a $5,000 college scholarship. Moody was recently accepted to the University of Vermont, and she is waiting to hear back from several other schools. She said she does not have a top choice and is considering studying government or political science.
This won’t be Moody’s first taste of the inner workings of government. As an eighth-grader, she served in the Legislature’s page program, and said the experience got her interested in state government.
“I didn’t do anything super significant — I mostly delivered messages — but being around all these legislators making real change in Vermont made me realize how impactful individuals can be,” Moody said.
This past summer, Moody attended a conference on ethics and global leadership in our nation’s capital.
“It was oriented around international relations, and since then I’ve had the idea of a career in diplomacy as well as government,” she said.
At Mount Abraham, Moody, daughter of Amy and Jim Moody, serves as the moderator for the community council, the student government body. She also occupies a leadership role in the Environmental Action Group, which helped build a composting facility on campus.
In Washington, government officials often speak at the conference, including President Barack Obama, who has made an appearance in each of the last two years.
Moody will be taking time off from school to attend the conference, which will run from March 7 to 14.
While there, Moody hopes to meet Vermont’s Congressional delegation — Sens. Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders, and Rep. Peter Welch — but said conference organizers reminded students that March is a busy time of year for legislators.
“I’m a huge Bernie Sanders fan and really love Leahy and Welch, as well, and I would be fortunate to interact with them,” Moody said.

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