From 6th Grade Delegate to Student at USC: Committed to California YMCA Youth & Government (Y&G)’s programs from sixth grade to twelfth, Prathik Rao enjoyed three years as a delegate in the Model United Nations (MUN) program and four as a delegate in the Model Legislature & Court (MLC) program. The passionate participant was elected as Delegation President in eleventh and twelfth grade. Fast forward, Prathik embraces college life at The University of Southern California, majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Cinematic Arts. Fight on, USC Trojans!

Civically Engaged: On campus, Prathik is involved with several extracurricular activities that share a major commonality: his skills are used to benefit the community. The college junior shares, 

I am involved in the USC Code the Change. It is a social-impact computer science organization that builds software solutions for nonprofits and non-governmental organizations that typically cannot afford a full development team. I am also a member of USC Makers which is a hardware and software organization. There, I have completed a basketball-hoop attachment project intended for low-income areas with prevalent basketball culture. In addition, I am part of Zeher - USC's Premier Bollywood Fusion Dance Team. The funds we produce from competitions go to an organization that helps visually-impaired youth. Before college, Prathik was deeply involved with Y&G’s civic engagement opportunities, and recognizes the MUN and MLC programs for fostering the confidence to use his voice.

Looking Back: Through the seven years spent between the MUN and MLC programs, Prathik reminisces about a time he was proud of his efforts, “I authored a bill about legalizing euthanasia and spent a lot of time researching, discussing concerns with real legislators and coordinating with other delegations to make sure it got through. It passed through both houses”. 

For Those Interested in Joining Y&G: Though Prathik’s commitment to Y&G speaks volumes already, he advises that anyone interested in MUN or MLC should reach out to current delegates or program alumni to hear their personal accounts. Prathik shares, “I would encourage students interested in the programs to talk to current delegates and program alumni to hear all of their incredible stories. Every story is unique but they all lead you to believe that Youth & Government changes lives, which it does”.

We thank Prathik for his dedication to the MUN and MLC programs and wish him much continued success at USC and beyond!

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