LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - Lock Haven University played host to area high school students who attended Congressman Glenn “GT” Thompson’s Government Outreach 2010. The event, held in the Price Performance Center on Thursday, September 9, included participants from high schools in the 5th Congressional District. Participating high schools were Central Mountain, Cowanesque, Jersey Shore, Montgomery and South Williamsport.Lock Haven University is a member of the Pennsylvania State
System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the largest provider of higher education in
the commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 250 degree and certificate
programs in more than 120 areas of study. Nearly 405,000 system alumni live and
work in Pennsylvania.
The purpose of Congressman Thompson’s Government Outreach is to give students insight into the role of government in their daily lives and to provide them an opportunity to become familiar with the operations of government by interacting with individuals who make the decisions, influence the decisions, and report those decisions.
The Government Outreach program was begun by Thompson’s predecessor, Congressman John Peterson. Thompson stated, “I am proud to continue the tradition that Congressman Peterson started.” The program is now in its fourteenth year.
The day’s activities began with a welcome from Lock Haven University Interim President Barbara B. Dixon. She thanked Congressman Thompson for providing an opportunity for students to meet one of the leaders who represent them and their families, and to see what a life of public service is about.
Congressman Thompson shared his pleasure at being on the Lock Haven University campus. he noted that all three of his sons attended LHU for all or part of their education, and presented Dr. Dixon with a throw from the U.S. House of Representatives. He then answered students’ questions, which covered a variety of economic and social issues.
Walter Eisenhauer, professor, department chair, and director of the LHU Physician Assistant Program, spoke about the United States service academies. “I’m honored at the opportunity to represent Lock Haven University and Congressman Thompson to present on the United States military academies,” he said. “As the father of a son who is a midshipman at the United States Naval Academy, I am very thankful for those who serve our country, and I hope we can inspire future leaders from the high school students who are attending today.” As a member of Congress, Representative Thompson has the privilege of nominating students to the U.S. military academies. He provided handouts with information about eligibility requirements, academy application and the appointment process.
The featured speaker was Robb Armstrong, whose syndicated comic strip “Jump Start” runs in more than 450 newspapers in 8 countries. Armstrong is a popular public speaker, and has been recognized for his community outreach by the Governor of Pennsylvania, the Senate, the House of Representatives and the Department of Justice.
Students also heard a talk by Dr. Lawrence (Larry) A. Schardt entitled, “The Magic Moment: Creating a Lifetime of Happiness and Success,” and learned about “The Lock Haven Experience.” They enjoyed lunch on campus before boarding their buses for the return trip to school.
A life-long resident of Howard Township, Centre County, Congressman Thompson was elected to represent Pennsylvania’s Fifth District in the U.S. House of Representatives on November 4, 2008 and sworn as a Member of the 111th Congress on January 6, 2009.
Prior to being elected to Pennsylvania’s most rural district, Congressman Thompson spent 28 years as a healthcare professional. He has served on the Juniata Valley Boy Scout Council for 30 years and continues to actively participate in scouting as the council’s president. He is a former member of the Bald Eagle Area School Board and is past vice-chair of the Private Industry Council of the Central Corridor. He is a member of the House Agriculture, Education and Labor, and Small Business Committees.
Congressman Thompson is a graduate of Penn State University and Temple University, where he earned a Masters of Education. He and his wife, Penny Ammerman Thompson, have three adult sons, Parker, Logan, and Kale. They reside in Howard Township with their dog, Truman.
Speaking of his Government Outreach program, Thompson said, “It’s a tremendous opportunity to have students from schools from all over the congressional district here at Lock Haven University—to see the campus and have that ‘Lock Haven Experience’ for a day.” He added, “We talk to students about things that are important in their lives and important in their future. I’m hoping that out of the conversations we have today, some of the students will find a career path.”