Special Programs

Penn Model Congress offers three Special Programs for delegates: Executive Branch, Supreme Court, and National Security Council. These programs will require more preparation and effort throughout the conference, so only those students who are motivated to participate should apply. For more information on each of the programs, please click on the links below.

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Department of Health and Human Services

The Department of Health and Human Services committee focuses on policy ranging from Medicare to infectious diseases to disability services. Participants will take on roles such as National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention representatives. Delegates will neither prepare bills in advance nor write new bills in the committee. Instead, each committee session will be focused on creating recommendations or suggested executive actions for issues in the United States that fall under the purview of DHHS. In addition, the committee will manage crisis situations as they arise.

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Over the course of the conference, delegates play the roles of Supreme Court Justices, in addition to acting as petitioner and respondent attorneys arguing before the Court.

Each school is invited to send a team of two delegates to the Supreme Court Program. Because of the schedule, both delegates must be in a Senate committee.

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The Executive Branch Program, led by a student-elected President of the United States, consists of the President's Cabinet and closest advisors. Delegates will discuss signing or vetoing legislation passed by Congress and will attempt to tackle some of the most difficult issues facing our nation. Some of the Cabinet Officers with relevant jurisdictions also sit on the National Security Council (see below).

Because of the competitive nature of the Executive Branch Program, all interested delegates must apply to participate. The group will meet regularly in place of committee sessions, so students who participate in the Executive Branch will not participate in regular committee sessions.

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The National Security Council is the President's principal vehicle for responding to national security crises. Along with certain high-ranking officers from the Executive Branch Program, participating delegates will represent either the Pentagon, the State Department, or the White House. Because these crises can occur at any time, delegates on the National Security Council are on-call to respond to an emergency 24 hours a day.

If a delegate from your school is filling one of the seven Executive Branch roles that also sits on the NSC, that delegate also serves on the NSC.

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