Dartmouth High student taking public service mission to Washington, DC

Jan 3, 2019

Shane Rose is going to Washington in March to meet the nation’s leaders in a trip of a lifetime.

The Dartmouth High senior is one of two students in Massachusetts to win the United States Senate Youth Program competition. Consisting of a written test, in-person interview, and an essay contest, Rose received a $10,000 scholarship and an all-expense paid trip to the nation’s capital.

It’s a trip Rose can’t believe he won. He first heard about it last year, but despite making it to the interview phase, did not win. Looking to better himself, he applied again in late 2018, this time nailing the test, interview, and his essay about the Constitution.

In March, Rose will travel to Washington, DC to meet with world leaders, take tours of national landmarks, and learn more about how the nation’s government works. He’s most excited to meet President Donald Trump, his own U.S. Senators, a Supreme Court justice, and an ambassador, although he won’t find out who he’ll actually meet until it happens.

Rose hopes the trip will broaden his passion for public service. It is a path he was inspired to follow when he first began taking government and politics classes at Dartmouth High School. From there, he began volunteering at the South Coast Youth Court program. It provides an alternative to juvenile court.

“It was then I was able to meet a lot of students who were living in poverty,” Rose said. “They were facing a lot of struggles I wasn’t even aware of. I wanted to help and become more involved.”

He recalled one moment when he spoke with a teen who had to go through the program, and learned he had to quit playing baseball that summer due to financial reasons.

“Hearing this kid tell me that he had to stop playing a sport he loved because his family just couldn't pay for it, it really hurt me,” Rose said. “It made me think wow, I’ve been very fortunate and these kids unfortunately are at a disadvantage.”

It inspired him to get involved elsewhere, including Dartmouth High’s Helping Hands program, which helps low income students in Dartmouth.

“It was a snowballing effect of how I got involved in public service, and how my want to continue being involved in public service is growing,” Rose said.

Although his career choices changed quite a bit growing up, he now hopes to either go into law, business, or engineering. He’s applied to UMass Amherst, UConn, Northeastern University, and the University of Michigan so far. Whatever he ends up doing, however, he hopes to connect it back to public service.