Students flying to Boston for HMC

By Chris Lesiak
Staff Writer
The Harvard Model Congress (HMC), which according to its website is “the premier government simulation for high school students,”, will be held from Feb. 23-26 on the campus of Harvard University in Boston.
Prospect is once again participating in this annual event. According to Erik Hodges, social studies teacher and one of the organizers of the Prospect delegation, approximately 20 PHS students will travel to Boston to play the roles of any one of the 535 Senators and Representatives. Participants will get to debate legislation, work on bills in committees and vote, as well as deliver speeches, though they will have to sign up to do so.

Hodges added that the cost per student for the trip is around  $1,000.
Senior Dan Troutman participated in HMC last year for the first time, and taking the role of Florida Rep. Daniel Webster,  was the only student from Prospect to win a speaking award. He will be doing HMC again this year.
Troutman says the main factors that led him to participate in HMC were his brothers doing it previously and Hodges’ encouragement, as well as a desire to see Boston, a tour of which is included in the trip. He said that HMC engages students to show them how parliamentary procedure works, though the rules are somewhat relaxed so as to not focus on all of the formalities.
This year, Troutman will play Virginia Senator Mark Warner and will sit on the Committee of Homeland Security. One of the topics he expects to discuss with his peers is the ongoing oil problem.
Troutman said that the program is fun and that he is looking forward to participating in it again and have all the competition of last year.
“Even though you’re surrounded by prep schools from the East Coast, Prospect still manages to do really well,” Troutman said.