By Carissa Hahn
Saint Mary’s University students participated in Day at the Capitol to promote civic engagement and active citizenship while lobbying Minnesota state legislators for the Minnesota State Grant program on March 20, according to SMU’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel Ann Merchlewitz.
“This year we took 58 students to the Capitol, which was one of the largest groups from any Minnesota private college,” said Merchlewitz.
Merchlewitz said SMU has been involved with this event for well over 10 years. The event is sponsored by the MN Private Council and happens every year.
Brian Thomas, senior and Student Senate vice president of external affairs, has participated in this event for three years. This year, it was his job to plan and promote the event with the help of a small committee.
“The trip is very beneficial to students for several reasons,” said Thomas. “Lobbying for the program is important because it affords many students the opportunity to come to SMU. It’s also important to get to know your legislators in case there is an issue you need solved.”
SMU will be attending this event next year, and it will be open to all students who are interested. Students who are interested in going should talk to incumbent Student Senate VP of External Affairs Connor Ellinghuysen.