Ridgefield High School senior Sophia Haber was one of 100 young women selected to attend the 72nd American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Girls Nation session July 21-28 in Washington, D.C. As part of the premier ALA program, two outstanding high school seniors are selected to represent their respective state as “senators” at ALA Girls Nation after participating in one of 50 ALA Girls State sessions held across the country.
ALA Girls Nation is a seven-day leadership conference that provides aspiring young women leaders with practical insight into how the federal government operates, instills a sense of pride in our country, and promotes youth civic engagement. Many participants of the program go on to have careers in public service at the local, state, and national level.
Haber, a rising senior at RHS, was active in many ways during her week at ALA Connecticut Girls State. She’s captain of the RHS Debate Team, editor of Lodestar, co-leader of a bipartisan club, “We the People,” and student facilitator with the Anti-Defamation League.
At ALA Girls Nation, Haber will participate in mock senate sessions complete with caucusing and debating of bills that range in topic from personal to political interests. Other activities on the agenda include a visit to the White House where the senators will meet the President, a meeting with state senators on Capitol Hill, a community service project, a visit to Arlington National Cemetery where they will place a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a tour of the D.C. monuments, and a visit to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
“ALA Girls Nation is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our nation’s future leaders to learn about the inner workings of the federal government before they are of voting age,” said Lisa Chaplin, ALA Girls Nation chairman. “After attending their local ALA Girls State program and then ALA Girls Nation, the girls return home ready to be engaged citizens at all levels of government.”