Aspirational Congressional Candidate Shares His Story with Junior State of America Club

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Aspirational Congressional Candidate Shares His Story with Junior State of America Club

Aditya Pai speaks about his opinions of the current Democrats candidates running for the 2020 presidential nomination.

Aditya Pai speaks about his opinions of the current Democrats candidates running for the 2020 presidential nomination.

Junhee Ryu

Aditya Pai speaks about his opinions of the current Democrats candidates running for the 2020 presidential nomination.

Junhee Ryu

Junhee Ryu

Aditya Pai speaks about his opinions of the current Democrats candidates running for the 2020 presidential nomination.

Junhee Ryu and Nicholas Hung

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Aditya Pai, a Harvard Law graduate student and member of the California Democratic Party, spoke to the Junior State of America club in a lunchtime forum on Dec. 9 in room 608.

Pai briefly spoke about his journey from Bombay, India to serving local and state political causes in Southern California. He delved into the importance of youth political activism and awareness and answered questions from the club on topics such as racial identity in politics and the upcoming presidential election. 

“I think [Pai] really gave us good insight on how American politics work,” club member and junior Yash Fatehpuria said. “It was very inspirational for me personally because he’s an Asian American trying to get into politics, which is mostly dominated by Caucasian people in our country.” 

Seeing somebody who was pretty young and had a similar background getting involved in politics would’ve really helped me to believe that I can do the same, and so, my hope is, if nothing else, that it makes people interested in maybe pursuing the path of law and politics.”

— Aditya Pai

Club president and sophomore Kevin Lu, who invited Pai to speak, says that he is grateful for the opportunity to bring such a well-versed figure to his club members and looks forward to possible future visits from other community members.

“Especially for something like JSA, we’re trying to tackle issues that we see out in the real world all the time, and I think bringing in someone who has been out there actively working in politics and government was really insightful for all the students,” Lu said. 

Pai also addressed current problems that American youth face today, such as gun violence, the housing crisis and a lack of generational diversity within the government. He encouraged students who attended the club meeting to be aware of what is going on that might affect them in the future.

“When I was in high school, clubs like Speech and Debate, Model UN and Mock Trial really inspired me to get involved in public affairs and gave me a lot of the support and encouragement I needed to get started,” Pai said. “Seeing somebody who was pretty young and had a similar background getting involved in politics would’ve really helped me to believe that I can do the same, and so, my hope is, if nothing else, that it makes people interested in maybe pursuing the path of law and politics.”