NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

January 18, 2013

A ticket to history

Salisbury teen D.C. bound for Barack Obama's inauguration

(Continued)

“I feel politics needs a little comedy or it can get pretty bland and depressing, but some things need to be handled with more sensitivity, like what happened in Newtown (Conn.).”

The youngest of eight children, Ryan Silva’s interest in government and politics is fostered by his parents. He and his dad talk politics a lot, which has occasionally led to some interesting dinner conversations, his mother said.

Those discussions coupled with their son’s political acumen and maturity led his parents to give him the nod for this solo excursion, which they believe could lay the groundwork for an interesting future, she said.

“He’s always done well in school, he gets good grades and he’s just a great kid,” said Paula Silva, adding her son recently designed a logo at school used by the Massachusetts Administrators of Special Education, which honored him at a luncheon.

Ryan Silva expanded his love of politics at Whittier through his American history courses and this year’s honors United Nations course with teacher Jana Brown. He said the course enhances his political insight to global events, leading to research and debates on the problems facing the world today like the Middle East and nuclear armament.

He’s been so taken with politics that he joined the Model U.N. Club, which meets weekly after school under the guidance of Brown and fellow teacher Scott Robertson.

“Ryan is very passionate about politics and very well informed on both national and international issues,” Brown said. “He is excellent in our class debates; he’s very well spoken. I’m so happy he’s getting to go to this conference. I know he’ll learn so much there.”

Educators like Brown have had such an influence on Ryan that he is seriously considering a career in education after college. He’s looking to possibly continue his education at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, where he would not only be able to hone his artistic talents, but study political science as well.

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