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Student Leadership Academy
Developing Leaders for a Changing World

New York State Model Senate Session Project Participants 2012

New York State Model Senate Session Project 2012
Participants from Hostos Community College 2012
Issue for Debate: Hydrofracking (Hydraulic fracturing)

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
The purpose of this bill is to prohibit the issuance of new gas and/or oil permits for well drilling that involves hydraulic fracturing (hydrofracking).

The Fantastic Four participate in a debate on the hot topic of Hydrofracking (Hydraulic fracturing) in New York City and New York State Politics.

Michael Cruz Michael Cruz (R, C, IP) represented District 4 and sat in the seat of New York State Senator Owen H. Johnson and laid out his position against a moratorium on the business of Hydrofracking, because it would delay the progress necessary for New York State to move forward and make headway against the loss of jobs and to open up the doors to new energy opportunities. Michael began his career at Hostos as a part of the Student Orientation Services Team and quickly moved up into the Hostos Student Leadership Academy’s Student Ambassador Program. Michael participated as delegate in the National Model United Nations-New York Conference in 2011, representing Burkina Faso and then served as Head Delegate for the team in the fall of 2011, in Washington, D.C., representing Ghana. Michael was chosen to receive the Vice Chancellor’s Excellence in Leadership Award for the 2010-2011 school year, when he also served as the Editor and Chief of the Hostos Newspaper. In the 2011-2012 school year, Michael was elected to serve as a Senator and eventually was elected to serve as the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Chair of the Senate. Michael has also been a participant at the Millennium Campus Conference in 2010, 2011 and 2012 and was an Ernest Malave CUNY Leadership CLASS Fellow for 2011-2012. He currently works for Citizenship Now.

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Gretcher Hernandez Gretcher Hernandez (R, C, IP) represented District 56th and sat in the seat of New York State Senator Joseph E. Robachand and argued against Senate Bill 6261-2011, which recommended a moratorium on the business of Hydrofracking, because she felt it would stop business and industry in New York State from prospering and that by not using the new technology of Hydrofracking to uncover natural gas and resources to help our state grow, we would remain in a stagnant state of a reliance on international oil, which she suggested would break the bank accounts of every New Yorker. Gretcher is an ASAP student, who participated in developing a program for their leadership team and she also joined the Hostos Student Leadership Academy’s Student Ambassador Program, where she excelled as a member, participating as a delegate in the National Model United Nations-New York Conference in 2011, representing Burkina Faso and then serving as a delegate in the National Model United Nations-Washington, D.C. Conference, representing Ghana. Gretcher has also attended the Millennium Campus Conference at Harvard in 2011. Gretcher was selected to be a part of the Ernesto Malave Leadership Academy Student Investment Ambassadors for 2011-2012.

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Manuel Mercedes Manuel Mercedes (D, WF) represented District 28 and sat in the seat of New York State Senator Liz Krueger and he made a cogent argument for the approval of Senate Bill 6261-2011, because he believed that the damage caused by excessive drilling would cause communities to incur substantial waste and not have anywhere to dispose of it. He also made the case that at the current time, the residents of New York State and his constituency in particular are not aware of all of the dangers that might be caused by the ongoing Hydraulic fracturing in areas of the state that might be negatively influenced by the act. Manuel is an ASAP student, who participated in developing a program for their leadership team and he initially joined the Hostos Student Leadership Emerging Leaders Program and was soon promoted to be a member of the Academy’s Student Ambassador Program, where he excelled in his efforts working in the community. Manuel was part of a group of students that attended the Millennium Campus Conference at Harvard University in 2011. Manuel was chosen to receive the Vice Chancellor’s Excellence in Leadership Award for the 2011-2012 school year and was an Ernesto Malave CUNY Leadership CLASS Fellow for 2011-2012. He currently works for Citizenship Now.

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Ruth Romero Ruth Romero (R) represented District 5 and sat in the seat of New York State Senator Carl L. Marcellino and she made a strong effort on the state senate floor to convince her colleagues to understand that in order for the New York to move forward and expand its efforts to improve the lives of its citizens, the senate needed to not get involved in preventing Hydrofracking to continue to be implemented in New York State. She made it clear, that by placing the topic of Hydrofracking in the political realm was causing there to be a struggle for advancement and improvements in New York. Ruth also made a strong case for New York State’s investment in “Energy Independence.” Ruth began her career in the Hostos Student Leadership Academy in the Emerging Leaders Program and she was promoted to be a member of the Hostos Student Leadership Academy’s Student Ambassador Program. Ruth has been a participant at the National Model United Nations Conferences in New York in 2011, representing Burkina Faso, in Washington, D.C. in 2011, representing Ghana and served as the Head Delegate for the team in Washington, D.C. in the fall of 2012, representing Italy. Ruth was also elected to serve as the Vice President and Chair of the Senate for the Student Government Association in the 2012-2013 school year. Ruth was also a participant at the Millennium Campus Conference in 2011 and 2012. She serves as a delegate in the City University of New York University Student Senate (USS) and was selected to be a member of the Ernesto Malave Leadership Academy’s Student Investment Ambassadors for 2012-2013. Ruth was selected to receive the Vice Chancellor’s Excellence in Leadership Award for the 2011-2012 school year. She currently works for Citizenship Now.

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Model Senate logoThe Model New York State Senate Session Project is an annual leadership development program, run by the ETR Internship Program in collaboration with the Puerto Rican/Hispanic Task Force of the New York State Legislature and the State University of New York. Each year, more then 60 CUNY and SUNY students are brought together for a series of intensive training seminars on stare policy formulation, legislative processes, representation and leadership. CUNY students are selected for participation from their home campuses through the offices of their respective college presidents, provosts and student affairs officers. The ETR Internship Program coordinates the selection process for CUNY. The seminars include visits from prominent NYS legislators and guest lecturers. The program culminates with students debating bills on the floor of the New York State Senate chamber in Albany. Participating students are also given the opportunity to compete for scholarship awards. Through participation in the process of legislative decision-making, students further their organizational, research and public speaking skills by means of a model legislative seminar. By working on a legislative agenda that they develop, the students play an integral role in their pursuit of a public service education. Moreover, they are introduced to a “hands-on” approach to involvement in the political and policy processes that affect them, their families and their communities.

For More Information on the New York State Model Senate Session Project, or to fill out an application, please visit: http://www.etrinternship.org/html/modelsen.htm

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