Mikala Jordan ’14 experienced the workings of the US Government in a personal way as a Senate Page in June 2012.
For more than 100 years, messengers known as pages have served the United States Congress. Pages are appointed and sponsored by a member of Congress and must be high school juniors and at least sixteen years old. Senate page duties consist primarily of delivery of correspondence and legislative material within the Congressional complex. Other duties include preparing the chamber for Senate sessions, and carrying bills and amendments to the desk. Pages also attend classes in the early morning at the United States Senate Page School.
Jordan applied for the program through Senator Susan Collins’ office, and after an interview process, she was selected and went to Washington DC to attend the first summer session of the Senate, where she worked for the Republican Senators.
In addition to learning about government in Page School (during the first week, she was quizzed the first week on facial recognition and correct spelling of all Republican Senators), she would photocopy, serve water, set up desks and podiums for speeches, and deliver messages throughout the Capitol and Russell and Dirksen Senate Buildings. During the session she attended, the Farm Bill and all 73 amendments were voted on.
The pages, who were from all parts of the country, lived in Webster Hall, which is close to the US Capitol, and used the private subway to get to work. Pages are paid for the work they do, earning roughly $600 per week. Room and board are provided.
During her stay in DC, Jordan enjoyed meeting other students from across the nation and used her free time to visit historic sites, monuments, and the many museums of the national capitol.
Students may apply to be Senate Pages by contacting Senator Susan Collins (http://www.collins.senate.gov) or Senator Angus King (http://www.king.senate.gov).