Seward, Lopez Greet Future Leaders At Capitol

March 22, 2011
Senator Seward (right) and Assemblyman Lopez (left) meet with students from the Schoharie County 4-H legislative intern program on the “Million Dollar” Staircase.
State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) and Assemblyman Pete Lopez (R/C/I-Schoharie) welcomed students with the Schoharie County 4-H legislative intern program to Albany this week.

High school juniors and seniors representing each of Schoharie County’s six high schools took part in the program. They toured the state Capitol learning about state history and observing the inner workings of state government. Senator Seward and Assemblyman Lopez met with the students on the “Million Dollar” Staircase.

“Touring the state Capitol and meeting with legislators provides students with a real working knowledge of how state government operates,” said Senator Seward. “As a past member of 4-H, I am proud to see the program’s traditions continuing with today’s students.”

“I always enjoy the opportunity to speak with our young people and learn their feelings about government and related issues,” said Assemblyman Lopez. “It is important to let them know that we support their continued growth in education as future leaders.”

Students in the legislative intern program learn about county and state government through hands-on experiences like the Albany tour. Several alumni of the program have gone on to successful careers in the public sector.

“Public service is vital to the success of our local communities. I look forward to seeing these students go on to serve in the public arena as elected officials, volunteers, or in other public posts,” Seward concluded.

The Great Western Staircase, also known as the “Million Dollar” Staircase, took an unheard of 14 years to construct, from 1883-1897, and cost more than one million dollars. Designed by Henry Hobson Richardson and built by Isaac Perry, the staircase contains 444 steps and is 119 feet high. It is renowned as an outstanding example of American architectural stone carving excellence.