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The Devil's Advocate

The Student News Site of Leominster High School

The Devil's Advocate

The Student News Site of Leominster High School

The Devil's Advocate

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State Senator John Cronin Visits Leominster High School, Providing Insight on Jobs in Government and How Students can Get Involved

Photo from Westford CAT Press Release

On Wednesday, April 10, 2023, State Senator Dem. John Cronin came to Leominster High School and spoke to students about his profession and how students can be more active participants in the government.


Senator Cronin graduated from West Point United States Military Academy and after graduating, he entered the service for five years. After leaving the army in 2018, Cronin knew that he was “passionate about public service” as he said, and he wanted to continue in any way he could. He ultimately landed on the idea of working in politics. 


Cronin represents 10 communities, including Leominster and Fitchburg, and he is one of 40 State Senators from Massachusetts.


Due to the fact that it is an election year, Cronin is working hard on his campaign. The Senators are required to reapply every year and they appear on the ballot every two years. 


Although campaigning can be time consuming, Cronin said campaigning “allows me to work directly with the people that I represent” so it is not all bad.

Senator Cronin answering personal questions after speaking. (photo from Cronin’s intern Samuel Cavalheiro)


This year, Leominster High School student Tyler Witzgall is working on Cronin’s campaign team, collecting signatures to put him on the ballot. In addition, Tyler works in Cronin’s office going through newspapers and finding information for Cronin to use to help him with constituent services.


Tyler said, “I sort through newspapers and clip out pictures or articles that include positive things constituents in the district do”. After he finds the clippings, the Senator laminates them and writes the constituent a letter in an effort to reach out to the people that the senator represents. This practice is modeled after something that former Senator Edward Kennedy used to do.


When talking about his campaign, Cronin highlights the importance of the media and the decline in the number of people who read the newspaper.

It becomes very difficult to run a campaign and run for office when there are fewer reporters at the State House asking difficult questions and fewer newspapers helping politicians get their message out.


Cronin advised the students to, “read the newspaper everyday”. Not only this, but to read different newspapers with different biases so as to form your own opinions and filter through misinformation.


Cronin also gave the students some insight into what his everyday life is like and how he is able to be successful on the Senate floor.


Cronin said, “at the end of the day, you need to compromise” when he spoke about his work with Representatives in the House.

Cronin works closely with State Representative Natalie Higgins, and he explained to the students the importance of building relationships across houses in order to get any work done.


The State Congress differs from the Federal Congress in the sense that if members are too strong willed and only vote with their party causing bills to die, the Representative

Senator Cronin answers questions from students in the Students for Transparency and Understanding of Municipal Politics club (photo from Cronin’s intern Samuel Cavalheiro)


s and Senators will not be reelected.


One bill that Senator Cronin played a role in is the Student Opportunity Act which changed the chapter 70 formula and increased the per capita amount of money for all students, specifically in low income areas. 


The chapter 70 formula is responsible for determining funding for towns in Massachusetts that specifically target the education programs.


The Student Opportunity Act has increased the amount of funding for English Language Learners’ classrooms drastically.


Senator Cronin encourages students to find what they are passionate about and how they can contribute to their community.


“We need young people to get involved,” he said.


Cronin will be up for re-election in the fall.

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About the Contributor
Victoria Miele
Victoria Miele, Reporter
Hello, my name is Victoria Miele and I am a senior at LHS! This year I am in Journalism 2. This summer I attended the Washington Journalism and Media Conference in Washington D.C. where I was able to meet journalists working on Capitol Hill, as well as tour the Capitol Building, and sit in the National Press Club and listen to credited reporters speak about their jobs and day to day lives. Throughout the year I play volleyball, tennis and I snowboard, but I love to read and write. I also work as a Personal Care Assistant for a young girl with SMA and I am a member of student government for the class of 2024, NHS, and I am the Vice President of Best Buddies. My favorite places to be are the library, my church, or playing volleyball with my friends. I am thrilled to be participating in this class and I look forward to the work we will be doing this school year!

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    Tyler WitzgallApr 18, 2024 at 7:44 am

    Absolutely amazing reporting Victoria!!!! We need more reporters like this in our society, and phenomenal article!!!!!