Through a variety of programs - for high school and college leaders to first-time political candidates and influential business and community leaders - the Sorensen Institute has established itself as a powerful and effective force for restoring public confidence in our political system. At the heart of every Sorensen program are three central themes: ethics in public service, the power of bipartisanship, and a concentrated study of public policy issues.
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Meet the esteemed alumni who completed our program and continued on to improve their communities.
Our leadership development programs focus on Virginia residents interested in becoming active in public service.
Reported by Ted McPhillips (Granby High School)
On our eleventh day here at the Sorensen Institute High School Leaders Program, we began with a study hall that allowed us to use valuable time with our policy groups to revise and add to our culminating projects. We read through the YPMs comments on our first full drafts, and worked as a team to fix the problems and weaknesses in our original plans.
Reported by: Thomas Liu (劉奐呈) (Langley High School) and Alex Moreno (Western Albemarle High School)
After an interesting Senate simulation on Sunday, Monday brought a movie, a variety of speakers and a unique lesson taught by Mr. Walls.
The movie A Perfect Candidate was about the 1994 senate race in Virginia between Ollie North and Chuck Robb. Learning about the issues in Virginia in 1994 and about the campaign style, which was very personal and combative, was thought-provoking and similar in some ways to current politics.
Reported by: Sabina Vohra (J.R. Tucker High School) and Alex White (Luray High School)
Having had a day off on Saturday, we jumped back into our busy schedule with an all-day Senate Simulation. Each of us had been assigned a Virginia Senator in advance to research and faithfully represent. The simulation was refereed by Mr. Walls as part of his class curriculum. John Metz acted as Governor and Caroline Bones played the role of Lieutenant Governor.
Reported by Chase Smith (Freeman High School)
Today we spent the first half of our day in McGaheysville at Cub Run Dairy, a major dairy farm in Virginia. With a guided tour from Mr. Gerald Heatwole, the owner of the farm, we learned about the production of milk for Krogers' shelves all across the Commonwealth.
To start, we witnessed a veterinarian do an ultrasound on a cow that was pregnant with twins! The fetal cows were no bigger than two centimeters each, but had beating hearts!