Senior Jason Ross recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend a Generation Next forum to share in conversations with President Donald J. Trump and panelists Ivanka Trump, adviser to the president; Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president; and Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta.
Jason, the current chairman of the Massachusetts Alliance of College Republicans, was one of 100 young leaders from across the country invited to the capitol on March 22 to discuss topics impacting the millennial generation, including the ongoing opioid crisis, small business opportunities and freedom of speech on college campuses.
“It was a huge honor. I am very impressed that the Trump Administration did this,” Jason said. “It shows they care specifically about millennial issues we face. It’s important that we were heard.”
He said he is pleased to hear the administration has plans in place to tackle the opioid crisis, and said the videos attendees viewed, as part of the crisisnextdoor.gov media campaign, were impactful. The website shares testimonials of those battling drug addiction.
“I encourage everyone to watch them. They are very raw and real,” he said.
During the forum, Jason posed a question regarding fentanyl and asked if the federal government is willing to do anything about changing the classification of the drug from a Class B to a Class A.
“In Massachusetts, it’s not classified as a Class A drug. A Class B drug that means dealers can’t be charged as traffickers – which means a minimum sentence and gives dealers less to worry about,” Jason said.
Panelists responded to the question and agreed it is a problem and suggested Congress take action.
The West Bridgewater native will graduate this spring with a degree in political science, and has hopes to pursue a career in public service. While he aligns with the Republican party, Jason said he wants to serve in a non-partisan role that will allow him to advocate on behalf of others.
“I don’t want to work on the ‘selfish’ side of politics. I want to serve on the ‘selfless’ side of politics. I have no desire to be governor or president,” he said. “I’d love to work as a town administrator in a town no one has ever heard of and help people.” (Story by Heather Harris Michonski, University News)