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The Aquilian

The Aquilian

Micheal Bicksel ‘25 returns to Eye Street after a semester as a Senate Page

Michael Bicksel ’25 with Assistant Secretary for the Minority Chris Tuck ’03

“Yea” and “Nay” can be heard across the Senate chamber as the senators enter through the double doors to vote. The Senate is a well-oiled machine fundamental to the U.S. government and is the upper chamber of the legislative branch. This fall semester Micheal Bicksel ‘25 became a functioning part of the machine this semester.

 To get this amazing opportunity, Bicksel applied through Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia’s office, and with Gonzaga’s close connection with the Senate Page Program, Bicksel was able to get the job.

Pages live in Webster Hall right off Stanton Park. Bicksel woke up before sunrise at 4:45 a.m. to get ready for the day and eat breakfast before his classes started at 6:15 a.m.. Classes lasted for 35 minutes Tuesday through Thursday and 50 minutes on Monday and Friday due to the Senate starting late on Mondays and not working on Fridays. At 8:45 a.m., Bicksel took the train from the Heart building to the Senate Floor working an hour on and off till the Senate was out of session, usually around 6 p.m. or to 7 p.m..

For work, the pages would go on runs for the cloakroom, basically helping the Senate staff prepare for the day. They would deliver documents to different back offices. Pages would also get water for senators, hold doors during votes, prepare the floor for speeches, weekly caucus meetings and whatever else the cloakroom needed help with. 

“The people were the best part,” Bicksel said.

Senate pages work and live with pages from all around the country from Alaska to all the way up in Maine and down in Florida. 

“I made lifelong friendships,” Bicksel said.

After the program, Bicksel still keeps in touch with his fellow pages.

“As a page, I got to meet people from all around the country, meet new personalities, and learn more about their different cultures and lifestyles,” said Andrew Kozeny ‘24, a former page.

Bicksel and Kozeny met new kids who had similar interests as themselves, worked with them, and hung out on the weekends touring the museums and going to Washington sports games.

“I learned a lot about working with other people. You learned how to balance stress, how to manage your time,” Bicksel said.

Bicksel got to learn important communication skills, as well as learn how to manage time and work pressure in such a professional environment, as well as gain new perspectives on how the government functions.

The transition hasn’t been bad. Gonzaga has a lot of experience with pages. The AP’s has been tough but with two free periods I’m almost caught up,” said Bicksel.

Bicksel has now returned to Eye Street.

Bicksel is very involved in the Gonzaga community being a member of the Speech and Debate Club, Model UN, Mock Trial Club, Sons of Liberty, and The Aquilian.

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