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Students at St. Thomas School in Southington put cans of soup into bags that were collected in connection with a Catholic Schools Month "Souper" Dress-Down Day on Feb. 1 at the school. From left are Richard Ciamarra, Logan Miller, John Byrne and Jack Galvin. Students who donated cans of soup were allowed to wear sports apparel for a day. The soup was donated to Southington Community Services. The dress-down day was the last of many activities the school participated in during Catholic Schools Month. (Photo submitted)
WEST HAVEN – Little did Cameran Tucker know, when he opened an envelope addressed to him from the National Youth Leadership Group last spring, that it would lead to a pair of excursions to Washington, D.C., including attendance at the second inauguration of President Barack Obama on Jan. 21.
Mr. Tucker, a junior at Notre Dame High School, was one of only 2,000 students in the nation invited to participate in a four-day leadership forum surrounding the inauguration. The West Haven resident attended workshops and forums on Jan. 20 and 22, primarily on the history of politics or the political process.
“It was very exciting to be a part of the one million people who attended the inauguration,” said Mr. Tucker. “We had to wake up at 3:30 a.m,. so I was almost too tired to be excited at first. But, once we got there, I wasn’t tired anymore. It was so much fun. It’s still hard to believe I witnessed it from close range.”
Guest speakers at the conferences he attended included Condoleeza Rice, who served as the 66th United States Secretary of State from 2005-09 and is now a professor at Stanford University; Retired U.S. Army Gen. Wesley Clark; investigative reporter Bob Woodward; and journalist Nick Clooney, the father of actor George Clooney.