MGS 22

Two Pacific High students recently attended the Missouri Girls State (MGS) Conference, held June 11-18, 2022, at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. Hope Smiley and Alyson Vogt applied through a sponsorship by the American Legion Post of Pacific, and they were able to attend along with hundreds of other girls from across the state.  Both girls excelled during the week, each earning accolades from their peers.

According to the Missouri Girls State website, the purpose is “to promote pride in America and to create a mythical state that the citizens will govern at the city, county and state level.” As part of this governance, Alyson proposed a bill that was 1 of only 4 to be passed by the MGS assembly during the week.

She said, “When I got to Girls State, they told everyone to make the most of the experience. They told us to get involved throughout the week as much as possible. That’s what I did to the best of my ability. Through the election processes, I worked my way from city councilwoman to being a member of the House of Representatives. I got a chance to write and debate my bill at the Capitol in Jeff City.  My bill was one of four that passed through the House of Representatives and the Senate.  I really enjoyed making memories there that I’ll never forget.  I met girls from all different backgrounds and I got the chance to learn from them. I wouldn’t have changed any step of my journey through MGS.”

Hope was featured in the MGS Gazette for the business she put into place.  She was also awarded Outstanding Political Citizen by a vote from all of the girls at MGS. Only one of these awards is given, and it includes a 4-year renewable college scholarship.

Hope said, “My experience at Missouri Girls State was enlightening, to say the least. I met motivated girls from all across the state and we came together and discussed our differences in a calm and professional manner. It was quite eye-opening to see how different we are, despite being from the same state. It taught me to celebrate these differences instead of feeling like I needed to alienate them. We also conquered setting up a foundation for our own government with all critical aspects needed, such as political leaders, judges, business owners, and voters. This camp also taught me how to publicly speak and stay calm under pressure, along with creating connections with girls who are high achieving and bound to achieve great things.”