The State Legislature doesn’t convene until next month, but still, the State Capitol on Wednesday was packed with lawmakers — well, junior lawmakers.

The young people came from schools across the state and are part of the YMCA’s Youth and Government Program. It teaches kids from 6th to 12th grade about what it takes to be part of the legislative process from lobbying, to bill-writing, and even how to report on government matters as a journalist.

Case McKinley told the students “that we learn here in YAG will ripple out, making up more successful (people) better able to improve our communities.”

The Youth and Government Program is carried out over a period of four months and welcomes about a hundred kids each year.

For more information about the program, click here.