Mangalick earns a (temporary) seat in Congress

Ellen Mi, page editor

From presenting a TEDx Talk about photography to leading the Congressional Debate Team at Edina High School, junior Yash Mangalick has jumped at every opportunity to further immerse himself in his interests. As one of the two Minnesota students who were admitted into the United States Senate Youth Program, Mangalick will take a trip in March to the United States Capitol to experience politics first-hand. 

In addition to this week-long experience, Mangalick earned scholarship money towards his college tuition. The program is offered through the Minnesota Department of Education and requires applicants to write multiple essays, provide their academic information, and, if selected, undergo an interview process. “The interviews talked about why I’m interested in politics and government, my existing leadership exposure, and what my future plans are,” Mangalick said. 

Mangalick anticipates that the program will provide him with the opportunity to experience the day-to-day routine of the U.S. Congress, a perspective typically only seen through the media. “You meet your senators, and last year they met the president and some other cabinet secretaries. I hope that happens again this year,” Mangalick said. “I think that this will be a great chance to see if [politics are] actually the way [they are] portrayed in the media.”

Aside from being the captain of the Congressional Debate Team, Mangalick is a cabinet member for Edina Mosaic and a member of Student Senate. “The great thing about working with Yash is that we both have similar leadership positions,” senior and teammate Anushka Thorat said. “You really see the way that he wants to lead in that he wants to see that things are going in the right direction. He generally wants to come up with new ideas and implement new initiatives for [debate and Mosaic] to be better.”

On the Congressional Debate Team, Mangalick researches, drafts, and debates legislation. As a leader in an activity that simulates the United States Congress, Mangalick is no stranger to the structure and function of the federal government. “He loves reading the news, and he always has very interesting ideas for bills and legislation, so I think that really got him interested in the world of fixing things as much as he can,” Thorat said.

Overall, Mangalick’s genuine interest in public policy fuels his hunger for knowledge. “Through all of his extracurriculars, he really tries to help people as much as he can. Everything he does is driven towards making people feel better and be better,” Thorat said.