Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press

Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press

Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press


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A week at the capitol with Harris

For five days, sophomore Cassie Harris was not seen at Liberty High School. That week, she could be found attending Page School with other Pages at the Washington State Capitol Building in Olympia. 

A Senate Page is sponsored by a senator and gets to join a group of other students for a week of observing those working in the Capitol Campus and attending Page School. Harris attended Week 4 of the Senate Page program through January 29th to February 2nd.

“We got to work with the senators and just learn how the Washington state senate works,” Harris said. “I even got to have lunch with my sponsor, Senator Mark Mullet.”

Pages stay overnight in Olympia and report to the Capitol Campus by 7:30 a.m, where they get their schedules and see what they’re doing for that day. 

“For the majority of the day, we’d be hanging out with the security guards and helping take lobbyists to their meetings and to senators,” Harris said. 

Lobbyists are people who lawfully influence the decisions of government officials, such as senators. During the week of the Page Program, Harris witnessed how senators discuss bills and helped pass out papers through their desks. 

“I didn’t know that senators on the floor, if they weren’t there, they had to be formally excused,” Harris said. When they aren’t and they’re around in the wings, they pop their heads in and say ‘aye!’ when they’re calling roll.”

After a day of scurrying around the Capital Campus, Harris and other students would attend Page School for two hours, where they learned about the branches of government and the lawmaking process. 

“We had a big project in Page School where we had a mock trial to get a bill passed,” Harris said. “My group’s bill was to push back middle and high school start times to when elementary school starts. It unfortunately did not pass.” 

In addition to learning about the government, Harris also learned life lessons from those working at the Capitol Campus. 

“My favorite piece of advice that I was given was don’t be afraid to take interviews and network because that’s how you get places in life,” Harris said. “And that was from one of the security guards.”

It was Harris’s mom who found out about the program and thought it would be a good opportunity.

“I’ve always been interested in politics, so I thought it would be fun to see how it actually works,” Harris said. “I’m thinking of becoming a lawyer, but if I went into politics I would want to be behind the scenes, like a legislative aide.”




About the Contributor
Alexa Lim
Alexa Lim, Spotlight Editor
Alexa Lim is a junior at Liberty High School and the Spotlight Editor in the Patriot Press. In her free time, she enjoys painting, reading, and writing.