Senator Warner of Virginia has proposed legislation that would eliminate the Close Up Fellowship Program. He characterizes the Close Up Fellowship Program as “outdated, ineffective or duplicative”
The basis of Senator Warner’s conclusion is that “budget experts” in the Bush and Obama Administrations have sought to terminate funding. See his press release at http://warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Blog&ContentRecord_id=c3ed18ad-4c3b-43e8-8767-e3ebc9661fc3.
Tell Senator Warner the Close Up Fellowship Program is a very effective use of government dollars. Last year, the $1.942 million provided funding for 1,700 economically disadvantaged students to participate on Close Up Washington civic education programs. The funding ensures that every student, no matter their family income level, has an opportunity to come to Washington for a life transforming experience. Furthermore, the Close Up Fellowship Program helps the Close Up Foundation pump more than $20 million in the Virginia economy each year.
Call Senator Warner at 202/224-2023 or email him at http://warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Contact. Tell Senator Warner that you oppose his Amendment 4368 to the Tax Extenders Bill and that he should support Close Up and our civic education mission.
Close Up Fellowship Program is authorized under Section 1504 of the No Child Left Behind Act to provide financial assistance for economically disadvantaged middle school and high school students and their teachers to attend Close Up Washington civic education programs. It has been authorized in elementary and secondary education legislation for almost forty years.
The goal of Close Up Washington civic education programs is to educate and inspire young people to become informed and engaged citizens. The programs are designed to increase civic responsibility among young people and enhance their understanding of the federal Government.
Every penny of the federal funds provided to the Close Up Fellowship Program pays the tuition costs of economically disadvantaged students and their teachers to participate on week-long Close Up Washington civic education programs.
Each year Close Up Fellowship Program funds enable over 1,700 economically disadvantaged students to attend week-long Close Up Washington civic education programs.
The Close Up Fellowship Program enriches the diversity of the student population on Close Up program. The fellowship program, therefore, is of benefit not only to the fellowship recipients but to all of the 16,000 students who annually participate on Close Up Washington civic education programs.
While federal funding represents a small portion of Close Up Foundation revenue, it is a critical portion that permits us to a great number of economically disadvantaged students.
While $1.942 million, the amount of the FY10 appropriation, will not make an impact on the federal deficit, there is no better investment that the federal government can make in our nation’s future than building educated and responsible citizens, one person at a time. It is imperative that we provide economically disadvantaged motivated young people with the opportunity to come to Washington and learn by directly interacting with their democratic government.