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Amanda Gordon is just a small town girl, but for five days this coming week she's going to be amidst revelry, dignitaries and all the glitz the nation's capital has to offer.
The seventh grader at Trenton Middle-High School will be there Tuesday when Barack Obama becomes the country's 44th president, thanks to a recommendation from a teacher two years ago that designates her as among the nation's brightest young people.
The 13-year-old daughter of Jamie and Michael Gordon is an alumnus of the Congressional Youth Leadership Council and National Young Scholars Program. Every four years the Junior Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference (JrPYIC) invites students to attend the presidential inauguration for a sneak peak at how the nation's government works.
Amanda learned about six months ago that she was among 3,000 students from across the country selected to witness the inauguration. She had previously attended other leadership council events in Washington, Philadelphia and Boston and was now about to embark on not viewing "old' history but watching history as it unraveled before her eyes.
"I get to see something that many people do not," she said Tuesday, adding she is pretty impressed that she was selected. "I'm just a small town girl."
Amanda admits she doesn't know a whole lot about the president-elect, but she will be listening intently to his speech Tuesday.
Amanda leaves Saturday for Washington and the JrPIC has a weekend of activities planned for its guests. The group is schedule to meet several notables including Colin Powell and Neil Armstrong. The students will also have their own gala ball to commemorate the event.
When not hobnobbing with the rich and the famous, Amanda is a cheerleader at Trenton Middle. She enjoys hanging out with her friends, shopping and reading–especially the Twilight series.
Although it's too soon to define a career for the timid seventh grader, she's already mulling over a possible future in nursing.
But for now, her biggest concern is making Washington trip and sampling new cuisine. And of course one day bragging to her children and grandchildren that she was a part of the history-making inauguration.