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What is Louisiana Girls State?

Updated: Jan 10

Dear future Girls State citizen,

Congratulations! You’ve been selected to represent your school and community at Louisiana Girls State! You should be proud of yourself and the accomplishments that led you to this point, but now what?

Let’s start with the basics. Louisiana Girls State is a unique program that brings together high-achieving young women from across the state to learn about local and state government. Once you arrive at Northwestern State University, you will be greeted by counselors who will guide you through the program.

After registration, you will move into your home for the next week and meet the other citizens in your assigned city and parish, as well as your counselors. Later in the night, we will all meet for first convocation, where we’ll cover the basics for the week ahead including the available elected positions and the voting process.

It’s day two, and we’re off to the races—literally. Today we begin city and parish elections. Each girl must present a speech and run for office. This may sound daunting, but fear not; everyone is guaranteed a position, whether it be mayor or city health officer or judge or coroner.

Once elections are finalized and every girl has a position, we will break into academics. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to meet girls outside of your parish. You will meet with your academic group throughout the entirety of the program to work on your assigned project, debate and pass bills, or hear and settle court cases.

On the third day, we will split into political parties and begin state elections. There are seven available state offices, and you can either run for office or support the candidates of your choice.

As we narrow down the candidates in the next few days, you will get an up-close look into the political processes that are ubiquitous in local and state government. Every girl will be involved in the exciting campaigning process from wheeling and dealing to political rallies.

Aside from running for office and campaigning, you’ll hear from notable guest speakers and government leaders as well as participate in a college fair. In the final days of the program, citizens will present their academic projects and elect state officials.

On the last day of Girls State, we will all gather for our Inauguration and Awards Convocation. You finally made it! You’re probably tired and ready to rest at home, but you might not be ready to say goodbye. The once unfamiliar faces around you are now life-long friends. The memories you’ve made in the last week will stick with you for many years to come.

More than anything, Girls State is designed to challenge its participants, instill confidence in young women and build a lasting sisterhood. Not only will you learn much more about the political processes that guide your state and local government, but you will also discover your strengths and the power that comes from a supportive network of extraordinary women.

Ultimately, Girls State is what you make it. Don’t be afraid to fully immerse yourself in the program and all it has to offer. Write that speech, run for office, campaign for your sisters, and realize your potential. Seize this opportunity. After all, this program is for you. You are what makes Louisiana Girls State the best in all the land.


A proud Girls State alumna

Sydney McGovern

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