The Saline Area Schools Board of Education unanimously confirmed Saline High School senior Evan Thomas as its 2019-2020 student representative.
Thomas said he was looking forward to representing his peers in Saline schools and that he would work hard to ensure their "voices are heard" in the school district's halls of power.
"I plan to have every student have their voice heard on this board and, through me, I believe that would be the most efficient way," Thomas said, while quickly getting his footing speaking to a room full of elected officials and community leaders.
Thomas is apparently the second oldest student in the Saline Area School district; a fact that he hopes means that he has the maturity and perspective to serve in his student representative role well.
Aside from being old enough to vote in a Saline Area School board election or on a local bond proposal, Thomas believes he brings other qualities to the table.
"I've spent my entire life here in Saline, and over these last 12 years in Saline's great schools I've learned quite a lot," he said. "I would like to bring not only my experience as a student in the district, but my experience studying things outside of school pertinent to the school board. [I've studied] political science on my own, biology on my own, and American history," he said. "I think those things meshed with my age, being one of the oldest students in the schools - all of these things bring together someone who can really represent the students the way they want to be represented."
Trustee Michael McVey good-heartedly ribbed Thomas, asking, "Just how old are you?"
The board asked Thomas if he plans on voting, and he was prideful in his response that he was a registered voter and planned on doing his democratic duty at the polls in the future.
Thomas replaces Samantha Hambleton as student representative. She served until the end of the 2018-2019 school year this past June.
Students typically apply for the student representative slot during the summer months with a letter of intent to serve on the board in that capacity, after which the board members interview applicants and choose who they believe is most capable of representing the student body.
After addressing the board from the podium, Thomas took his seat at the board table and personally placed his name placard in front of the seat that will be his until next June, when he leaves Salina Area Schools for the wide-open world of adulthood, and likely, higher education.