Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Lee Senior Goes Inside Washington

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Lee Senior Goes Inside Washington

Article excerpt

Byline: Sandy Strickland

Aubrey Carr went to Washington to meet with a Supreme Court justice, come up with a "bill" to strengthen Social Security, serve as a justice at a mock court trial of the Hobby Lobby case and represent China in dealing with a rogue terrorist group from India.

The 17-year-old, who will be a senior at Lee High School, spent four weeks learning about the inner workings of the nation's capital. The Robert E. Lee Alumni Association presented her with a $5,000 scholarship and facilitated her selection to the St. Albans School of Public Service Summer Program. Carr was one of 46 students from 17 states, as well as three from China, selected for the coed program at the prestigious boarding and day school for boys in grades 4-12.

Carr said it was "wonderful" to be surrounded by students who were equally academically inclined and to get their intellectual feedback. They met with Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, Rep. Frank Pallone of New Jersey, toured the U.S. Naval Academy, took part in sophisticated simulations and heard from a range of speakers. They included high-ranking attorneys, a think tank leader and the head of a feed-the-homeless program that uses nonviolent offenders.

Carr, who plans to major in physics in college and go on to law school, said she was inspired by the speakers and the possibilities open to her.

Oh, and the Social Security bill that her group worked on "passed" 26 to 19.

Here's more good news:

- With saws and pruners in hand, Jacksonville's new "Tree Stewards" are improving the city's landscape. The Duval County Extension Office recently trained 22 master gardener volunteers as stewards through the Florida Urban and Community Forestry Grant Program. With the $2,200 grant and $2,200 in matching funds, the office provided 40 hours of classroom training and a cache of hand tools, a news release said. They pruned 75 trees along the entrance road to Betz-Tiger Point Preserve to remove deadwood and promote good structure. …

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