Ambitious Golden Valley High senior William Oh has big plans for his future.
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And after about five minutes of conversation with him, it’s easy to see why.
That’s barely enough time to list all the activities and clubs in which Oh participates.
“I’ve always, since I was young, had a fascination with the law and government,” said Oh, who initially wanted to be a judge, but was inspired by a summer internship to go into politics.
“So I know my passion,” he said. “My talent lies in politics and the legislative process.”
He’s already gained an impressive resume in that respect, and will get a chance to hone that after he earned a $5,000 scholarship and attendance at a one-week, all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., in March.
Oh was named a delegate Tuesday to William Randolph Hearst Foundation’s 52nd annual U.S. Senate Youth Program.
Oh said working in Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon’s district office in Stevenson Ranch clarified his future focus.
“It really opened up my eyes and perspective and it made me want to go into political office that much more,” Oh said, adding that he really enjoyed the chance to help McKeon’s constituents. “All the people who worked there were very amazing and kind.”
For Oh, an honor roll student with seven AP classes, the opportunity is a dream come true, he said.
Oh’s ultimate goal is to be a U.S. senator, and he’s already had a taste of the political arena on the local level.
“Amazing is probably an understatement,” said Golden Valley High Principal Sal Frias, in describing Oh’s academic and extracurricular achievement. “Looking at what he’s accomplished — what’s he’s doing now and what he’s done — could make one tired just reading a list of all of it.
Frias is hardly being hyperbolic.
In addition to a hefty course load, he’s also the Associated Student Body president for Golden Valley, and has been involved in ASB for four years.
He was also founder and president of the community service-oriented Octagon Club, president of the Speech and Debate Club, co-president of the Key Club and a board member of the city of Santa Clarita Visions in Progress Youth Advisory Committee.
And he’s on Golden Valley’s varsity tennis team, which made the playoffs last year.
And he recently was elected by his peers to the William S. Hart Union High School District’s governing board as a student representative.
“I definitely do try to take advantage of the opportunity,” Oh said, describing the experience as an eye-opening one. “I knew that we had a board, and I knew we had people behind the scenes making policies, but I never knew the depth and the detail of the work they do.”
In just two meetings since his appointment, he’s already left an impression on board members.
“I’m very impressed with him, and I’m very worried about my job on the board,” said Hart district board President Joe Messina. “He does his homework, he asks all the right questions, he’s well informed — he’s obviously a very bright young man.”
However, one of Oh’s proudest achievements is an effort he coordinated sophomore year at Golden Valley High School.
Oh described himself as very passionate about the environment and educational opportunity, and Oh was able to make a campuswide impact when he signed Golden Valley up for the Green Your School national competition.
He organized intramural competitions to increase recycling and tracked the school’s progress, with the results earning his school a $5,000 grant from dosomething.org.
The money was spent beautifying the campus — something he’s very proud of, he said.
“The vote and the American system of government and politics make me marvel,” Oh wrote, in his application to the summer Senate program. “I want to be able to continue this American tradition: the power of the vote, the opportunity to fight for a better life and the chance to advocate for what is right.”
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Source: Santa Clarita News