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Over the past few months, I have been involved with the movement to create a United States Public Service Academy. At its basic level, this academy would be the civilian counterpart to the military academies. Students would attend this new university (most likely built in D.C.) tuition-free for four years and in exchange give a minimum of five years of civilian service (federal, state, or local level).

There are two pieces of legislation in Congress right now to make this academy happen (in the House and Senate, respectively), but we need more support. One of the best things about this initiative is that it has been very grassroots, especially with young people pushing these bills through.

We have set up a National Youth Council and Youth Advisory Councils in all 50 state as a mechanism to get more students involved and help to influence organizations and policy makers in their respective states.

If you would like to get more involved or know anyone who would be interested, please visit the USPSA's website at http://uspublicserviceacademy.org.

Some specific things you can do now to support the USPSA:

--Sign the Petition: http://uspublicserviceacademy.org/take-action/student-petition
--Contact your Representatives and Senators: Let your voice be heard by emailing/calling/snail-mailing your state's Congressional delegation and telling them to support S. 960 and H.R. 1671, The U.S. Public Service Academy Acts.
--And as mentioned earlier, you can join your state's Youth Advisory Council and help build the Academy through youth mobilization, political action, and Academy-blueprint feedback.

Also, USPSA and one of its co-founders, Chris Myers Asch, was featured in the New York Times Today. Check it out.

You can also join the Facebook group.

I do sincerely hope those reading get involved. It is a great way to engage young people and send a message that public service is truly valued.



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