My short stay in Washington was amazing. Above all I realized that in Nevada we need to invest in this event for our state. I believe that it is essential for our Senators and Representatives to hear the voice of our students. I learned a lot of facts and figures about the state of the arts with the budget cuts, but the voice of D'Andre Carter our STO and ITO Region I representative is the voice that made a difference to our congress men and women.
Most importantly our Senators and Congress men and women need to hear the stories from our students about how their lives are being affected and changed by the opportunities they've had in theatre and the arts in education. We actually got to talk to three out of six of those we had appointments with. It was very interesting to talk with the aides of others. These young men and women who are the aides and spokespeople of our senators and congressmen are very eloquent and I was surprised to hear how many of them have had some kind of public speaking or theatre backgrounds!
Although we might not think it makes a difference, I believe the more we ask for what we want and need regarding funding in the arts the more likely they will be to listen... especially if the voice is that of our students.
I would like to take our STO to the capitol in Carson City and make appointments for them to talk with our state government officials. And then next year, I would like to invest in taking at least 2 STO with me to DC for this very important day.
I look forward to a new approach to advocating for the arts in our state. I even had an opportunity to talk with one of the aides about technical theatre and our CTE status. Good news! If we continue to speak out, little by little they will at least hear our voice, even if the vote doesn't go our way, at least we can be persistent in making our voice heard and one day, hopefully they will act on our "asks"