Manual inspires students to take action

Katie Baird

On Monday, January 9, 2012, senior Jake Sims, along with Matt Garofalo (12) and Allison Traylor (11), took initiative and held a voter registration for anyone turning 18 before Election Day in November.  At the end of his junior year, Sims was elected as the president of Teen Republicans. After a summer of shocking unenthusiastic reactions from students about national political issues, Sims knew that he had to change his peers’ involvement in politics.

Upon returning back to school, Sims had a brilliant idea that would hopefully get more Manual students excited about the upcoming election and politics as a whole.

“I sought to establish a bipartisan atmosphere among students—a grassroots example of the kind of cooperation needed in Washington,” Sims said.

The Teen Republicans then teamed up with the Young Democrats to hold the voter registration drive in the senior cafeteria during lunches. The main message the two clubs wanted to convey was that regardless of your political views, voting is a privilege we all possess and is an important part of our country’s democracy. 60% of Manual’s eligible students have already taken their turn in becoming a registered voter.

“Voting is fun. It’s great to see how excited people get when they fill out their forms,” Sims said.

One senior, Aaron Dyche, is proud to say he is now a registered voter.  “I was excited to do it because my family is really involved with politics and I get a chance to participate. Also, I needed to make sure I represented the small Republican part population at Manual,” Dyche said.