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Detroit Lakes High School senior tests out political waters through Stanford summer program

Earlier this summer, Tanner Yocom, soon to enter his senior year at Detroit Lakes High School, participated in a program that will undoubtedly aid him in his endeavors to attend law school and eventually become a politician.

Yocom's impressive résumé of extracurricular involvements won him acceptance into the Junior Statesmen Summer School Program at Stanford University. For three weeks, he lived in the dorms, attended class, debated bills written by fellow attendees and met with guest speakers from Facebook co-founder Chris Kelly to the Russian Consulate.

With options ranging from macroeconomics to cyberpolitics, Yocom catered to his own agenda and took an AP U.S. Government course, which met for three hours in the mornings. His afternoons were spent in a Leadership and Public Service class.

"That (class) will help us to be proactive in our communities and learn to speak well," Yocom said of its intent.

The two-part class system, which totaled 85 hours, included three essay examinations and a 15-page term paper on how Obama has done so far during his term.

"I feel completely prepared for college," Yocom said, "and I learned more about government than I ever thought I would."

With an "A" in Government 101, Yocom is on his way toward entering into the political spectrum on a more professional level.