Baxter Hershman, a Gig Harbor sophomore, is the newest student representative on the State Board of Education.
Hershman, 16, will be sworn in for his two-year term in July. He just returned from Pasco, where he sat in on the board meeting with outgoing representative Mara Childs.
While on the board, Hershman said he hopes to give an accurate portrayal of what it’s like to be a student. After all, the board deals with policy issues and its students that are affected by policy. Hershman hopes he can give the board a unique point of view.
The State Board of Education has two student representatives; representing both eastern and western Washington. Including the students, the board is made up of 16 members from around the state.
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The eastern representative is Madaleine Osmun, a junior at Mount Spokane High School who has recently completed her first year on the board.
In Pasco, Hershman was able to sit in for the meeting and follow the board on site visits.
“It was extremely informational,” he said. “I felt very much a part of the group.”
Hershman said his friends weren’t surprised at all that he made it on the board. He’s been involved in student government since the sixth grade.
Hershman’s leadership teacher at Gig Harbor encouraged him to apply for the position, saying she believed he would be a good voice for students.
So is public service where Hershman will find himself in the future?
“It’s definitely one of the pathways I’m considering,” he said. Hershman is also interested in law, politics and medicine.
The board will meet from July 7 to 9 at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. The location of the meetings changes and upcoming meetings will be in Olympia, Spokane and Vancouver.