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Yaw Seminar Opens Window on Workings of State Government

South Williamsport Area Jr./Sr. High School students of Ryan P. Carper (right) have a class photo taken with state Sen. Gene Yaw.
South Williamsport Area Jr./Sr. High School students of Ryan P. Carper (right) have a class photo taken with state Sen. Gene Yaw.
Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour welcomes high school students to an enlightening day ahead.
Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour welcomes high school students to an enlightening day ahead.
Crompton gauges the opinions of his Field House audience ...
Crompton gauges the opinions of his Field House audience …
... and jokingly takes the pulse of a student who appeared inattentive.
… and jokingly takes the pulse of a student who appeared inattentive.
Yaw's "Senator for a Day" agenda included debate on a vital issue: limiting the prescribing and dispensing of opioids to patients.
Yaw’s “Senator for a Day” agenda included debate on a vital issue: limiting the prescribing and dispensing of opioids to patients.

High schoolers from Bradford, Lycoming and Union counties assembled at Penn College on Thursday for the annual Student Government Seminar organized by state Sen. Gene Yaw. Hundreds of attendees (students, advisers, government officials, lobbyists and members of the media) took part in the daylong gathering, the largest such Senate-organized program in the commonwealth. “This seminar is a great opportunity for high school students,” said the 23rd District Republican, who also chairs the college’s board of directors.  “It allows them to develop legislation, debate important issues with key policymakers, offer their personal input and vote on ‘mock’ bills in open session.” The intent of the event, begun more than 30 years ago under Sen. Roger A. Madigan, is for students to gain an understanding and appreciation of the legislative process and develop professional relationships that can open doors to their future. Before their brainstorming sessions, the students were treated to a rapid-fire primer on state government – as illuminating as it was irreverent – by J. Andrew “Drew” Crompton, chief of staff/counsel for Pennsylvania Senate President Pro-Tempore Joe Scarnati. A favorite part of the Yaw seminar for several years, Crompton served up a half-hour dissection of the “push and pull” within the state Legislature, blending in-your-face interactivity and infectious humor to further students’ serious understanding of the people’s business.

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