Students from around the state were in Bakersfield Saturday for the We the People state finals. The competition tests students to see how well they know the Constitution.
About 300 high school students took part in the California finals, representing nine regional championship teams. Only one school will advance to the finals in our nation's capitol. Students on Centennial High School's We the People team have spent countless hours preparing for the competition.
Centennial High Senior Nayab Alam said, "It's essentially a lot of research, a lot of reading up on current events, the news paper every single day."
The students showcase their skills through a presentation and their ability to answer questions on the United States Constitution, its history, principles and application.
Centennial High Senior Gabriela Forter said, "How do you feel about President Obama's immigration plan versus the senate bill plan that just came out two weeks ago? Other questions are like how do you feel about immigrants with rule of law? Do they violate rule of law?"
Through the process, they're coming away with more than knowledge of the constitution.
Alam said, "I've learned so much. I can honestly say I'm actually a good citizen. I know what's happening in the world." Forter said, "Not only how government works, like the three branches of government, but just how everything was founded upon, how the founders and the anti-federalists and the federalists, they fought to make this the most perfect union and how everything applies to today."
It's an experience that not only has a positive impact on their high school career, but will influence their future as well.
"I have that education base, that foundation from this class that I can use later on in my life," said Alam. Forter said, "The Centennial We the People team is a great team and I love it very much and I will never forget this experience my entire life."
The Amador Valley High School team from Pleasanton will represent our state at the We the People National Finals. Arvin High School came in second place and Centennial High came in third.