In which I get all boring and political and make fun of abbreviations

Three days ago, I sent a personalized form message through my professional association's website to my state senators asking them to support the Senator Paul Simon Study Abroad Foundation Act, which, to boil it down, would establish a foundation with the goal of increasing participation in (and funding for) study abroad and increasing diversity both in study abroad destinations and in the demographics of study abroad participants. This bill has been working its way through the system for a while and will expire if it is not passed by the Senate this year.

This morning, I received a reply from Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH¹):

Dear Ms. [srahlastname]:

Thank you for expressing your support of S. 991, the Senator Paul Simon Study Abroad Foundation Act of 2007.

Study abroad programs provide an opportunity for personal educational enrichment and the potential for greater mutual understanding and friendship between nations. I am a cosponsor² of this bill and will continue to support efforts to increase the global awareness involvement of our citizens. Our war with Iraq illustrates the vital need for cross cultural education.

S. 991 is currently being considered by the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations³. If the bill comes to a vote before the full Senate, I will definitely support it.

Thank you again for contacting me.

Sherrod Brown

Yes, there are a few holes in the message, but what matters is that he supports the bill. Now we're just waiting on you, Mr Voinovich!

If anyone else feels strongly about study abroad and would like to contact their own senators in support of the Simon Study Abroad Act, you can do so here. A list of current cosponsors of the bill can be found here, if you'd like to check first to see if your senators have already pledged their support. I would be particularly glad of your senators' support if you happen to live in... say... Illinois. Or Arizona. Or, heck, even New York. (But every little senator helps!)

¹ I can't help reading this as "D'OH!", even though the guy's on my side.

² I admit that I do not understand all the complications of government, but shouldn't he be listed here? Maybe it just hasn't been updated since I convinced him with my eloquence.

³ Actually, they passed it in February...

srah - Tuesday, 13 May 2008 - 6:22 PM
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Comments (7)

gravatar Wickedly Scarlett - May 14, 2008 - 1:36 AM -

I just emailed my senators! My study abroad experience was life changing, and I firmly believe that every student should have the opportunity to experience life in another country and culture before graduating.

gravatar srah - May 14, 2008 - 6:17 AM -

Yay! Thanks. I wasn't sure if this post was actually going to reach anyone who cared, but now it was worth it!

gravatar jday - May 14, 2008 - 3:42 PM -

Hey, I live in Illinois! I sent a message!

gravatar srah - May 14, 2008 - 3:44 PM -

:D Thanks!

gravatar mommy - May 15, 2008 - 8:10 AM -

I sent my message to Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow. Haven't gotten a response yet, but I am sure that I will.

gravatar Ruth Marie Sylte - May 15, 2008 - 8:49 AM -

It's great to see NAFSAns using their blogs to support the Simon Act. Thanks for the advocacy and raising awareness. Love the footnotes, too. So academic. :)

gravatar Penny - May 15, 2008 - 10:23 AM -

I got form letters from both Clinton and Schumer. They are both very busy but thank me for writing.

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