Pasco student spends week in Olympia learning about Legislature
Julia Ruiz, a student from Isaac Stevens Middle School, traveled to Olympia February 1 to serve as a page in the state House of Representatives. She was sponsored by her 16th district Rep. Maureen Walsh, R-Walla Walla.
“I am so honored to sponsor Julia. I hope she enjoyed the opportunity and made some new friends,” said Walsh. “I'm grateful for her service here, and am looking forward to see what she does with this experience.”
Julia arrived early on Sunday to orient herself with the capitol campus, because part of her duties as a page would be to navigate the many buildings on the Capitol campus and delivered messages and documents to legislators and staff. During each day Julia also attended page school to understand the operations and actions of the Legislature. She incorporated all she had learned into a bill she co-wrote for a mock committee hearing consisting of her fellow pages. Her arguments swayed the committee to pass a bill transferring all state funds away from reproductive clinics which perform abortions with only two dissenting votes.
Julia applied to the page program as preparation for her future as a lawyer. She also plays in the orchestra and is never far away from a book. Julia says she needed a lot of assistance from her history teacher, and am grateful for their help. She is the daughter of Noel Ruiz of Othello and Angela Leyva of Pasco.
Each year, students like Julia from around the state apply to participate in the legislative page program. Students spend a week attending page school, learning the inner workings of state government and assisting legislators on the House floor. Pages earn $35 per day while serving in the program.
To become a page, applicants must have a legislative sponsor, be between the ages of 14 and 16, and obtain written permission from their parents and school. For more information about the House page program, visit: http://www.leg.wa.gov/House/Pages/HousePageProgram.aspx.
###Washington State House Republican Communications