Two Selected Participants Will Each Receive $10,000 Scholarship, Spend Week in DC Immersed in Leadership Education/Public

(HARTFORD, CT) — U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) are calling for Connecticut school districts to nominate outstanding high school students to participate in the 2020 United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) by submitting nominee applications by October 18th, 2019. The Connecticut State Department of Education’s (CSDE) annual selection process is underway for two eligible secondary students to participate in this unique educational experience for high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers in public service. The two selected students will be among the 104 student delegates from around the country to meet their U.S. senators in the nation’s capital March 7 — 14, 2020 for the program’s 58th annual Washington Week. Blumenthal served as the democratic co-chair alongside U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) for the 2019 program. The full 2020 USSYP Senate Advisory Committee includes Murphy and will be co-chaired by Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) and Senator James Lankford (R-Okla.).

“Throughout schools in Connecticut, we have inspiring young people who will become our future organizers, activists, law makers, and leaders. We are calling on school districts throughout the state to nominate their most passionate and determined students for the opportunity to be recognized and further their growth with fellow students from across the country,” said Blumenthal and Murphy in a joint statement. 

Each year, two students from Connecticut are selected to travel to Washington, D.C. to represent the state at this national initiative that provides an opportunity for talented secondary school students with demonstrated leadership abilities to deepen their understanding of America’s political processes and encourage them to pursue their interest in professions in public service. In addition, the two students will also each receive a $10,000 William Randolph Hearst Foundation scholarship.

The USSYP was created in 1962 “to increase young Americans’ understanding of the interrelationship of the three branches of government, the caliber and responsibilities of federally elected and appointed officials, and the vital importance of democratic decision making not only for America but for people around the world.”  This extremely competitive merit-based program brings two high school juniors and seniors from every state to Washington, D.C. for an intensive week-long study of the federal government and its leaders. The Hearst Foundations have fully funded and administered the program since inception; no government funds are utilized.

CSDE, and state departments of education around the country, select the students through a rigorous nomination and selection process. In addition to outstanding leadership abilities and a strong commitment to volunteer work, the student delegates generally rank academically in the top one percent of their states among high school juniors and seniors.  The student selection is administered by each state’s chief school officer in cooperation with high school principals. Delegates must be juniors or seniors and elected or appointed student officers for the 2019-2020 academic year, and they must reside in the state where they attend school. Names of students selected will be formally announced mid-December. 

Interested students should contact their high school principal, school counselor, history or government teachers or CSDE’s USSYP selection administrator Stephen Armstrong at (860) 713-6706 or

The application deadline for Connecticut students is October 18, 2019. Students and educators can find more information on the USSYP and this year’s application on CSDE’s website here.

The 2020 program brochure with detailed rules, selection process and the annual yearbook can be found on the USSYP website here: To learn more about the program and see what last years’ experience was like please visit, .