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House District 22 Rep. Teresa Alonso-Leon met students from Woodburn when they visited the Capitol Feb. 16

COURTESY PHOTO: BRIAN GINGERICH - The WACA U.S. government class of Brian Gingerich (pictured far left) visited the Capitol Feb. 16 and met Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon (second from right).U.S. government students from Woodburn Arts and Communications Academy visited the Oregon State Capitol Feb. 16, along with their social sciences teacher Brian Gingerich.

"I try to do this trip almost every year," Gingerich said. "The kids have just finished up their government class, and this is a good final, educational activity for them."

The Oregon Legislature was in session during their visit, so they had the opportunity to privately meet with and ask questions of House District 22 Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon.

After meeting with Alonso Leon, the students watched the opening session of the House of Representatives and then took a guided tour of the Capitol, which included the Senate, the House of Representatives and the governor's office.

The students were able to hear stories of struggle and success from Alonso Leon and two of her staff members.

"Listening to their stories gave me hope and motivation," WACA senior Rachel Alarcon said. "Sometimes I actually believe that, since I am Latina, I won't be able to be as successful as a white person, but after seeing and hearing them, I have the motivation to move forward."

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