For the first time in decades, Christian Brothers University (CBU) was in attendance at the Tennessee Intercollegiate State Legislature (TISL), November 13-16 in Nashville. TISL is a state-supported entity that provides students with an education about Tennessee state government and a channel to express their opinions on state issues.
The CBU delegation, comprised of John Legge, Burton Bridges, Samantha Almanza, and Kenneth Latta, was praised by universities across the state for their diligence, enthusiasm and active participation. The CBU delegation was recognized as the “Best New Delegation” by the 39th General Assembly of TISL. In addition, Burton Bridges and John Legge were presented with TISL’s oldest accolade, the Douglas Carlisle Award. Furthermore, Bridges was named the “Best New Senator” and Legge was named the “Best New Representative.”
Legge authored a bill pertaining to the current state definition of “marriage.” Though TISL adjourned before Legge’s bill could be officially voted on, he gathered 12 supporting schools and 20 co-sponsors of the hot-button issue. “Knowing how to properly make compromises and negotiations, and having a strong command of parliamentary procedure, can take one far in the world of legislating. You just have to be confident and convincing while employing the rules of order to your largest possible benefit,” states Legge.
While in Nashville, the CBU delegates sat on various committees in a mock House of Representatives and Senate. They facilitated the passage and demise of bills sponsored by various members of each chamber. Delegates had to network with student from other schools to pass or fail certain bills.
TISL was created in 1966 by the Student Government Association of University of Tennessee at Knoxville under the guidance of Dr. Douglas Carlisle. Interest in TISL grew as the impact of government positions became a divisive issue for youth of that era. Since its conception, TISL has convened nearly every year in the State Capitol building.