WCPS sophomores pursuing journalism, political dreams despite harsh climate

Maryland

They may be teenage girls, but sophomores Maureen Rafter and Sara Malott have a lot more on their minds than prom dresses and Instagram posts. 

“Political apathy is a big problem with our society right now. I mean, there are a lot of people who just don’t see it necessary to vote or get involved,” Sara, who goes to BISFA, said. 

The pair was recently selected to represent Maryland at a national journalism and political conference at George Mason University this summer. 

“Our political atmosphere, and just our social atmosphere, is based on a lack of understanding for the other side. So, one of the things I hope to take away from this conference is meeting with people all across the country,” Maureenm a Williamsport student, said. 

Despite the current presidential administration’s hostility towards the media, both girls say they, and many of their peers, are drawn to journalism and politics.

“I think it’s all the more reason why students my age, who are witnessing all this happening, should get involved and should be passionate about it,” Maureen said. 

For Sara, the #MeToo movement helped her realize that her writing could help restore justice in the world and give victims a platform to tell their story. 

“As a woman, I have the voice, and I can stand up and say, ‘Hey, something is wrong,’ and speak out about these injustices that have been done,” Sara said. 

While both girls have dreams of being senators and award winning journalists, Maureen said she’s open to anything — as long as it helps bring positive change in the world.

“That might not be in 10 years what I need to do, what we need someone to do. So, as of right now, I am looking forward to doing something in a political science field, but that might change,” Maureen said. 

Past speakers at the conference include Hoda Kotb, Brian Lamb from C-Span and Sonya Ross from the Associated Press. 

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