Student convention coming here
Published: Thursday, January 24, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 23, 2008 at 11:47 p.m.
The student government at Gainesville High School started the school year with about $100 in its treasury and an idea that could raise its bank balance significantly - The young politicos wanted to host the 2008 state convention of the Florida Association of Student Councils.
Gainesville High got the bid. The three-day convention will begin Feb. 29, marking the first time in at least 35 years that the annual event has been held in North Florida.
Jane Wilson, a freshman senator and chairwoman of publicity for the event, said the conference has the potential to draw up to 800 students from around the state. Each participating school is expected to bring seven to 11 students. By Wednesday, about 600 students had already registered.
"We picked 'Leader Nation - State of Champions' because it's an Olympic theme," said Travis Edmond, the Gainesville High student president and co-treasurer of the association.
Wilson said there would be a lot of Olympic references through the convention. For example, a torch will be lit during the first general session and extinguished at the end of the convention.
Plans also include a District Olympics competition, which will be made up of games in the gymnasium.
"It should all be fun, especially meeting other people. But I think the most important part of this will be the resolution sessions, when we cut to the chase and pass resolutions that are important to all of us," said Anita Bushnyakova, a freshman senator working on the event.
According to the budget that Edmonds and the association's other co-treasurer, junior Gerard Williams, are working from, if only 500 students had registered, the event would generate about $100,000, and the Gainesville High student government would make about $13,000 in profit.
"That will be really good because we will be able to use it on future projects," Edmonds said. "When you realize that we started the year with $100, this will be a good fundraiser for us."
Karen Voyles can be reached at 352-359-5656 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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