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JALC’s MIG Team Wins Awards

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

Pictured are members of the award-winning Model Illinois Government team from John A. Logan College coached by Dr. Jane Bryant. Front row from left: Chris Wheetley, Lauren DeRossett, Taylor Bryant, Mandy Little, Sarah Vangorder, and Cory Henkelman. Second Row: Tim Murray, Alexandra Barben, Samantha Hamilton, Kendra Weinhoffer, Bryant, Nick Roberts, and Seth Richardson. Third Row: Colin Keith, Derek Cima, Joel Clements, Jon Cano, Joel Williams, Garrett Russell, Cliff Reeder, and Joseph Chance. Back Row: Nick Rafael, Ethan Edwards, Michael Roberts, and Cory Frisby. Not pictured are Emily Rich and Payne Massetto. (Logan Media Services photo)

Pictured are members of the award-winning Model Illinois Government team from John A. Logan College coached by Dr. Jane Bryant. Front row from left: Chris Wheetley, Lauren DeRossett, Taylor Bryant, Mandy Little, Sarah Vangorder, and Cory Henkelman. Second Row: Tim Murray, Alexandra Barben, Samantha Hamilton, Kendra Weinhoffer, Bryant, Nick Roberts, and Seth Richardson. Third Row: Colin Keith, Derek Cima, Joel Clements, Jon Cano, Joel Williams, Garrett Russell, Cliff Reeder, and Joseph Chance. Back Row: Nick Rafael, Ethan Edwards, Michael Roberts, and Cory Frisby. Not pictured are Emily Rich and Payne Massetto. (Logan Media Services photo)

CARTERVILLE – The John A Logan College Model Illinois Government delegation came away with multiple awards at a recent simulation held at the Capitol building in Springfield.

Those awards included: “Outstanding Large Delegation,” “Outstanding House Member (Mandy Little),” “Outstanding Original Legislation (iSMART authored by Taylor Bryant),” “Outstanding Lobbyist (Cory Henkelman),” and “Outstanding Moot Court Attorney (Christopher Wheetley).”

Logan also won two executive board positions for next year’s simulation (Attorney General Taylor Bryant and Senate President Mandy Little).

JALC government professor, Dr. Jane Bryant, said the “Outstanding Large Delegation” award was earned by having Logan students on the current executive board and elected/appointed in other leadership positions for this year’s simulation.

Those students holding leadership positions include: Taylor Bryant -Senate Majority Leader (elected); Mandy Little-House Majority Leader (elected); Cory Frisby-House Whip (elected); Kendra Weinhoffer -House Whip (elected); Nick Rafael -Senate Whip (appointed); Seth Richardson-Senate Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Gaming Committee Minority Party Spokesperson (elected); Derek Cima-House Firearms, Gambling, Alcohol, and Tobacco Committee Minority Party Spokesperson (elected); Frisby-House Government Affairs Committee Minority Party Spokesperson (elected); Bryant-Senate Education Committee Chair (appointed); Weinhoffer-House Education Committee Chair (appointed); Tim Murray-current Attorney General (elected); and Joel Clements-current lieutenant governor (elected).

JALC President Dr. Mike Dreith was impressed with the delegation’s accomplishments.

“I think the only word that comes to mind is dominance. They did an incredible job,” he said. “It was probably the best performance by a community college I’ve seen in the state of Illinois in my 25 years as an administrator. And it’s wonderful because it teaches the art of political science. Dr. Bryant put together a top-notch team and they went up to win and that’s what they did.”

The Model Illinois Government or MIG simulation is one of the preeminent intercollegiate government simulations in the United States.

Each spring semester, approximately 300 students from over 20 colleges around Illinois participate.

The MIG simulation is structured for a legislative simulation, as well as a moot court competition. Students choose among various roles, including: legislators, lobbyists, journalists, attorneys, justices, and budget analysts. There are many leadership positions within the parties and committees. Within the legislature, students are assigned political parties and districts and placed in committees of their particular interests. The legislators then simulate the legislative processes in the actual committee rooms and chambers of the Capitol building.

The Moot Court competition is held in the chambers that were once the home of the Illinois Supreme Court. Teams of attorneys argue before a panel of student justices and legal professionals and are scored on the basis of presentation and knowledge of the case fact.

Awards are presented at the end of the simulation and students may also campaign for Executive Board positions (governor, attorney general, secretary of state, comptroller, etc.).

Other JALC students who attended the simulation are: Sarah Vangorder, Joseph Chance, Colin Keith, Michael Roberts, Joel Williams, Emily Rich, Garrett Russell, Samantha Hamilton, Nick Roberts, Ethan Edwards, Jon Cano and Payne Massetto (House of Representatives); Cliff Reeder (Senate); Cory Henkelman (lobbyist); Lauren DeRossett (journalist); and Alexandra Barben and Christopher Wheetley (Moot Court attorneys).

Some information for this story was provided by Zachary Sullivan from the Model Illinois Government Web page.