Tuesday, April 6, 2021
Last week, on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, our Student Government Association (SGA) leaders met with our Florida legislators during a virtual Meet Your Legislators Event.
The event kicked off with a welcome from Jay Galbraith, vice president, public affairs and marketing, and Courtney James, paralegal, before offering students a primer on how a bill becomes a law. Students then attended a live session with the Senate Education Committee.
Several Florida legislators, lawmakers and lobbyists participated in the event, including Rep. Geraldine Thompson, who led a discussion on current events and legislative issues. Following a lunch break students reconvened for a series of workshops including:
- A Day in the Life of a Florida State Legislator with Rep. Rene Plasencia
- Government Affairs from Disney with Director of Government Affairs at Disney Jose Gonzalez
- Overview of National and State Politics with Democratic Strategist Steve Schale
- How to Get Started in the Business with Author and Lobbyist Carlos Cruz
- A Conversation with Politico Florida Education Reporter Andrew Atterbury
The event concluded with a keynote presentation by the Secretary of the Florida Lottery and Valencia College District Board of Trustees Member John Davis.
One student shared “I wasn’t sure what to expect and was really surprised with how the virtual agenda came together.”
On Monday, April 5, 2021, Valencia College hosted a Congressional Town Hall with U.S. Congressman Darren Soto for our SGA leaders and Honors students. The Congressman gave a congressional update and had a lively question and answer session with students.
These events provided a great opportunity for our students to connect with legislators on a human level. They spent time listening, asking questions and engaging in generative dialogue. From legislator to lobbyist, students had an opportunity to learn how our state government operates. The guests provided inspiration, knowledge of current events and real insights into the Florida legislative process.