Student joins lawmakers at conference

Shaye DiPasquale, a senior at Freehold Township High School, was invited to attend the National Foundation of Women Legislators Conference in Philadelphia. The four-day conference was held in November.

Shaye’s invitation to attend followed the news that she had been awarded a scholarship from the Alice Paul Institute after being recommended by state Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande (R-Monmouth), according to a press release.

The National Foundation of Women Legislators Conference serves as a national forum designed to encourage the building of alliances among elected women, industry leaders and issue experts. Presentations throughout the conference offered elected women innovative ideas that could lead to policy resolutions.

During the day, Shaye and her fellow scholarship winners attended workshops and sessions on policies and current issues alongside the legislators. The topics of the workshops included human trafficking, breast cancer, Alice Paul and the ERA, Women in the 2014 Election, addiction to prescription drugs, health care, the foster care system and female voters, according to the press release.

The workshops were meant to supply the legislators with policy ideas to take home and implement in their respective states. The scholarship winners received an inside look at policy idea formation and discussion among legislators. The group was also invited to three evening events.

The Comcast reception included a tour of the Comcast building and a look at the company’s new products, and commenced in a networking opportunity with Comcast executives and legislators.

At the Philadelphia Museum of Art Women of Excellence Reception, legislators from across the nation were honored for their achievements over the past year, and the scholarship winners were awarded.

The final night’s event was the Constitution Center Gala, where former Hewlett- Packard CEO Carly Fiorina delivered an inspiring speech and Shaye was able to mingle with legislative and business executives from around the country, according to the press release.

“Overall, the experience gave me a chance to see how legislators interact and network while getting a chance to personally connect with female legislators from around the country. I had the chance to make a lot of connections, meet incredible women and girls, and learn a lot about the legislative process on the state level,” Shaye said.