Washington, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King congratulated Lily Tedford of South Portland and Katie Waeldner of Yarmouth for being selected as Maine’s delegates to the 55th Annual United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP). Lily and Katie will join 102 other students from across the country in spending a week in the nation’s capital where they will have an opportunity to study the American political process first-hand.
“Lily and Katie are outstanding students who will represent Maine well as delegates to the U.S. Senate Youth Program,” said Senator Collins. “I have the honor and privilege of being the first delegate to the U.S. Senate Youth Program to have been elected to the U.S. Senate. As a senior in high school, this incredible program strengthened my commitment to public service. I am pleased that Lily and Katie will have this invaluable opportunity to develop their leadership skills and learn more about our legislative process.”
“The Senate Youth Program is a great way to recognize talented young people from Maine and all across the country,” said Senator King. “Lily and Katie have demonstrated remarkable leadership and dedication to their communities, and I look forward to congratulating them in person when they visit Washington in March.”
Lily Tedford attends Maine School of Science and Mathematics and serves as a senator in the Student Senate. Lily is also editor-in-chief of her high school's literary magazine, secretary of the prom committee, and treasurer of the French and soccer clubs. She is an admissions ambassador, peer tutor, and varsity athlete in soccer, volleyball and track and field. Lily hopes to major in English and creative writing and minor in history or political science in college. Along with becoming a writer and public servant, Lily intends to return to her home state of Maine after college in the hopes of bettering the communities in which she grew up through local government.
Katie Waeldner attends Yarmouth High School and serves as a representative in the Student Senate for the Class of 2017. She serves on both the Student Senate and on the board of directors of Yarmouth Cares About Neighbors, a nonprofit organization that works to connect resources with those in need. Dedicated to community service, Katie founded a voucher program at her town’s farmers’ market for those in need, wrote a grant for weekend food bags for food-insecure elementary students and coordinated her town’s summer meals program. She leads numerous clubs with missions promoting anti-bullying, mentoring and the inclusiveness of students with intellectual disabilities. Katie is a multiple sport athlete achieving state championships and personal awards.
The USSYP, founded in 1962, is fully funded by The Hearst Foundations with the goal of raising awareness among young Americans about role of the federal government and the importance of our democratic process. During their week in Washington, from March 4-11, 2017, the students will attend meetings and briefings with Senators, Congressmen, the President, a Justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies, and an Ambassador to the United States, among others. Delegates also receive a $10,000 college scholarship to help them pursue their future endeavors.