Highlands High School wins state 'We the People' competition, heads to nationals

By Madelin Shelton
Highlands High School wins state 'We the People' competition, heads to nationals

First place finisher Highlands High School of Ft. Thomas, Ky.

Louisville, Ky. (January 20, 2023)- Reigning state champion Highlands High School, of Ft. Thomas, Ky., took home the top prize in Wednesday’s We the People state competition, earning a bid to nationals.

The annual state competition was hosted by the McConnell Center at the University of Louisville. Three teams participated, two from Highlands High School coached by Megan Boimann-Hennies, and one from West Jessamine High School coached by James Botts.

To prepare for the competition, students researched and studied U.S. constitutional history and principles through the We the People program. Drawing on their knowledge, they competed in mock congressional hearings, which were judged by UofL students, local professionals and McConnell Scholar alumni.

The winning Highlands High School team will now participate in the We the People National Finals, held at the National Conference Center in Washington, D.C. April 22-24.

Gary Gregg, Director of the McConnell Center, remarked on the importance of civic education programs like We the People. “It is so fulfilling to see young Kentuckians grappling with big constitutional issues,” said Gregg. “In this day and age, it often seems like less and less attention is being directed toward civics initiatives. That’s what makes We the People all the more crucial.

Longtime educator Glenn Manns serves as the Kentucky state director of the We the People program and organized the annual competition.

Participants on the winning Highlands High School team include:

  • William Anderson
  • Emma Barton
  • Kate Carris
  • Chloe Caudill
  • Emma Daly
  • Elisabeth Davidson
  • Connor Defevers
  • Maura Eckerle
  • Josephine Halbauer
  • Amanda Harrah
  • Vladimir Hoyle
  • Jackson Lang
  • John Laskey
  • Caleb Lindsey
  • Jonah Listerman
  • Gavin Loyall
  • Bellamy Martin
  • Cameron Myers
  • Ella Pieper
  • Kathleen Price
  • Hamish Rayner
  • Bode Russell
  • Emily Schaub
  • Ruby Smith
  • AnnaLucy Surrey
  • Sophia Veshapidze
  • Josh Green