[Stephanie Stokes photo]


Auburn High School’s ‘We The People’ team did not place in the top 10 at nationals this year, but the outcome was no less impressive. The 29 Advanced Placement Government students, along with teacher and advisors, Spencer Kennard and Vincent Benacchio, advanced to the ‘We The People’ national finals in Washington D.C. from April 27-May 1, the third trip to nationals for AHS since 2014.

The class qualifies for nationals by placing first in the state competition or earning a wildcard, depending on availability.

“We [AHS] were the Massachusetts champions in 2014 and 2015 and earned a wildcard this years” said advisor Spencer Kennard. “In 2016 and 2017 we did not qualify for nationals, but we placed third in the state both years.”

While the focus of the trip is competition, while in Washington, D.C., students also have the opportunity to explore the capital, learn about government beyond the classroom walls, and meet with elected officials and other dignitaries, according to the We The People website.

[Submitted photo]

Said Kennard, “I know it sounds like a cliché, but this is really a once in a lifetime trip. The students represented Auburn High School and the Commonwealth extremely well. It was an outstanding trip.”

It was not an easy journey. According to Kennard, the trip costs just north of $51,000, which means a lot of fundraising and a lot of gratitude to sponsors and generous supporters.

“This just does not happen without our donors and supporters and I want to thank each and every one of them.” Said Kennard.

We at AMD would like to help them do just that:

Editors note: the following list is provided by AHS; we apologize if there are any exclusions or errors.

Worcester Pistol & Rifle (In The Name of Brian Frappier), The Pappas Foundation, F.W. Webb Company, Auburn High School 2012, Auburn School Committee, Auburn Public Schools, The Vecchios, Cogswell Sprinkler Co., INC., Anne M. Cavanaugh, Atlas Distributing, INC., Auburn Democratic Town Committee, Mr. + Mrs. Quitadamo, Ms. Para, Ms. Fedella, Mandy, Lisa, Kathy, Brenda, Deb, Buffalo Wild Wings, Quinne Masiello & Margaret Kibbe, Smith , Mrs. Armendo, The Coffee Mug, Mr. Swedberg, Mr. Cormier, Dr. Brunelle, Courtland & Charlotte Kiltes, Tale of the Cod, Kelsey Kennard Photographs, Mrs. Carlson, Mr. Handfield, Coach D, Major David Brodeur Foundation, Cynthia Kingdon, Ten Mangoes Photography, Piercing Emporium & Tattoo, Boston Bruins, Providence Bruins, Boston Red Sox, Driven Performance, Fit FRIENDzy Studios, Cold Stone Creamery, Eller’s Restaurant, Major League Roast Beef, Citizen Wine & Cheese & Chocolate, El Patron, Weepin’ Willie’s, Auburn Town Pizza, Bruce & Karen Wilks, Yankee Piano Service, Mrs. Heidemann, Auburn Historical Story, Kevin Hussey, Gail Holloway, The Palmer Family, Dan Carpenter and Ann Westen, Heritage Restaurant, Boston’s Best Coffee, Kung Fu & Tai Chi Academy of New England, Stephanie Tolman, Kleen ‘n Hard, United Soccer of Auburn, Youth Basketball, Fastpitch League, Deep Relief Massage Therapy, Isaac’s Bridal Party, Y.M. Rutledge, La Jolie Fleur, Auburn Hot Yoga, Mary & Thomas Brousseau, Peter and Rachel Rhein, Erik and Amy Berg, Karyn Ferdella, Rep. Paul Frost, Lehong Attorneys at Law LLC, Auburn Education Association, Mr. Bergman, Scott Rano of Horizon Beverages, Katherine M. McClellan, Denise Landry, The Billings Family, The Bregman Family, The Stokes Family, Gwen White, Auburn Chief of Police, Janice King, Mrs. Fancy, Denise King.

There is certainly no question that all of the effort to help these students is appreciated and is energy well spent. One only need ask the students themselves.

“My freshman year, when Auburn High’s We The People team announced that they were going to D.C, I remember thinking

[Submitted photo]

about how cool that was and how I wanted to be a part of it some day. I never would’ve thought that my team would make it all the way to D.C. too” says Amanda Doherty. “Taking AP Government was the best decision I have made in high school and one of the most amazing experiences I will take away from these four years.”

Says senior Katelyn Norwood, “To be able to take part in the National Finals in D.C is a once in a lifetime experience that not many people get to partake in. Civic education is something we need to value more.”

Jacob Stokes adds, “I joined We The People in order to become more informed about the American Government. Not only did I learn about the government, but I was able to lessen my fear of public speaking and form personal bonds which I will keep for the rest of my life.”

The 2018 We The People Team is:

Samantha Barrell Brendan Benevento Zachary Billings
Matthew Bregman Kayrin Brower Jessica Chenard
Hannah Cherry Olivia Copson Lucas Daly
Enaira DaSilva Marisa Day Sydney Dinsdale
Amanda Doherty Kathryn Dudko Emily Frost
Jacob Landry Brianna Leon Savannah Louis Charles
Morgan Maher Haydn McPherson Tiffany Moen
Katelyn Norwood Renee Ordway Ana Pietrewicz
Kyle Powers Brian Sarkisian Jacob Stokes
Bridget White William Wright

 

[Submitted photo]