Students Discover Louisiana Girls State Experience Empowering

This summer, students Isabelle “Izzy” Tran, Christina Rareshide, and Chloe Guidry attended Louisiana Girls State, a government-in-action learning program of the American Legion Auxiliary. The program gives girls across the state the opportunity to live together as self-governing citizens and be informed of the duties, privileges, rights, and responsibilities of American citizenship. Program objectives include developing leadership and pride in American citizens, educating citizens about our system of government, instilling a greater understanding of American traditions, and stimulating a desire to maintain our democratic government processes within our republic.

At Dominican, the students are Student Ambassadors. Izzy is Campus Ministry Service Officer and President and will serve as Vice President of the Student Council Executive Board for the 2022-2023 school year. Christina is Student Council Senior Class Vice-Representative for the 2022-2023 school year and Vice President of the National Honor Society. Chloe is a Discipleship Club Liaison for Campus Ministry, a Retreat Team Member, and Chaplain of the National English Honor Society.

Girls State is open to students who are in the summer between their Junior and Senior year. Delegates must have excellent academic standing with their school, keen interest in government and current events, and strong leadership abilities.

Considered the 51st state in the United States, Girls State is split between four parishes and two cities for each parish. The state is split between two political parties – Feds and Nats. There are seven state positions, but elections begin in one’s parish. Each parish Feds and Nats elect a Parish Party Chairwoman (PPC) and a Campaign Chairwoman (CCW). They help to garner votes from other parishes and the CCW begins cheers for their parish. The PPCs and CCWs from each party elect a Fed and a Nat State Party Chairwoman (SPC). Once elected, the SPCs lead the Feds or Nats state election.

Izzy was elected State Party Chairwoman.

“Louisiana Girls State was the place where new friendships and life-long memories were made. From laughing, dancing, staying up to prepare for your campaign, and even crying on the last two days, LAGS was an experience that truly changed my perspective on life and prepared me for the future.”

– Isabelle “Izzy” Tran

“I had a surreal time at Louisiana Girls State, learning more about leadership roles in my parish and city, spending time with women who empowered me to go out of my comfort zone, and overall having fun with the people around me! It was a great experience and I’m so glad I got to attend!”

– Chloe Guidry

“Louisiana Girls state was a once in a lifetime experience with memories that will last forever. From meeting new people with different backgrounds to going outside my comfort zone in new roles, I grew as a person and gained valuable skills that will help me succeed in future endeavors.”

– Christina Rareshide

Started in 1940, Louisiana Girls State held its first full session in 1941. Louisiana Girls State has had several homes. In 1941, it was a two-day program held in New Orleans. Later, it was moved to Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and evolved into an eight-day program where it continued until 2006 when it was moved to the present campus of Northwestern State University in Natchitoches.