Jayapal Inspires Action

The congresswoman spoke to UPrep students

Pramila Jayapal addresses UPrep students on November 5th. She was invited to speak by Global Action Club.

Pramila Jayapal, congresswoman for Washington’s 7th congressional district, came to speak at University Prep about how students can take political action in their communities.

Jayapal was invited by the Global Action club, where members focus on global health, climate change and global politics.

Co-leader of the club sophomore Allie Sniezek said they approached Jayapal at the US Global Leaderership Coalition Luncheon on Oct. 3. 

“She was impressed that young people were so interested in change, so she gave her spokesperson’s card to us, and said she would love to come speak at our school,” Sniezek said. 

The Global Action club encouraged students to submit questions for the congresswoman to answer. 

“We wanted the student body to have a say,” Sniezek said. 

Jayapal mostly received questions about how students could take action in the world. To a question about what is being done to combat climate change in congress, Jayapal said

“The biggest thing we have been doing is urging on our young leaders.” 

Jayapal also addressed a student concern about growing polarization between political parties. She emphasized the importance of having productive conversations. 

“Make sure you’re upholding your principles, but make sure you’re listening to the other side,” Jayapal advised. 

Overall, Sniezek believes that Jayapal’s speech was a success. 

“I really liked her responses to the questions, and how she focused on what we as students can do,” she said. 

Not every student was as moved, however. Senior Emily Lyons-Hammond was impressed with Jayapal’s professionalism, but understood the visit to be self-

“She clearly has a lot of experience, but it came across as a little bit of a campaign event,” she said.