University date for school politicians

SIXTH formers will be battling it out at the University of Hull tomorrow to win a trip to Westminster.

The annual event organised by the Department of Politics and International Studies is aimed at improving the awareness of political issues as well as complementing coursework and exams.

Discussions are expected to focus on the coalition Government with talks by MEP for the Yorkshire and Humber, Diana Wallis, and the department's Lord Norton of Louth.

As part of the event, teams from two schools will be competing to win the trip to Westminster and a cash prize of 100.

Both sets of pupils have had to write a mock Parliamentary Bill on the issue of their choice and will present it to the conference and university academics who will decide on a winner.

Students from Woodkirk High School in Wakefield will present their offering, entitled Compulsory enrolment and voting for local and national elections and referenda for all eligible adults while the Stockton Riverside College Bede Sixth Form will be covering The University Tuition Fee Reward Bill.

The university has built a unique relationship with the Houses of Parliament over the years through the Westminster Hull Internship Programme (WHIP), which gives undergraduates the opportunity to work alongside MPs.

The event will be capped off with a question and answer session featuring Shadow Chancellor and Hull West and Hessle MP Alan Johnson, the Tory MP for Beverley and Holderness Graham Stuart and Carl Minns, the leader of Hull Council.

The trio will be joined by Dr Ian Kelly from the Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce.

Lord Norton of Louth, Professor of Government at the University of Hull, said: "The day promises to be an exciting event which we hope will capture the imaginations of the young people who are attending."